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Ireland's low carbon, renewable energy future - 16 November

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Ireland’s renewable energy production has contributed to the lowest carbon content of electricity generation on record. Put into figures, this equates to avoiding 2.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions in 2014 alone. This huge saving of emissions has halved Ireland’s 1990 levels of carbon intensity of electricity, reaching a record low of 457 grams of CO2 per kilowatt-hour of electrical output.

Renewable electricity generation in Ireland has been responsible for 22.7% of electricity consumption, led by onshore wind energy. In monetary terms, the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland has revealed that this growth in renewable energy has saved €250 million on fossil fuel imports in 2014.

These are encouraging signs for Ireland to meet its legally binding European target to achieve 16% of energy from renewable sources by 2020. In addition, the Government has set its own target of 40% renewable electricity consumption. Needless to say, wind energy has a large role to play, which contributed 47% of Irish renewable energy in 2013 and will help Ireland to meet a low-emission, climate resilient and sustainable future.

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