Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has expressed confidence in the idea that there will be no winter blackouts this year but stated that “nobody can guarantee it for certain”.
Many questions around the security of Ireland’s electricity supply have been brought into focus recently and were subject to further highlighting from yesterday’s EirGrid report.
EirGrid has predicted that Ireland could face blackouts over the next five years due to increased electricity demand but decreasing supply as a number of fossil fuel-fired power stations close.
Varadkar stated that supply this winter is likely to be safe but it’ll be dependent on the reopening of two gas-fired stations that are temporarily closed, Whitegate in Cork and Huntstown in Dublin.
For most of this year, these two stations have been shut down to allow for maintenance work to take place but are expected to reopen in October and November.
Varadkar stated, “I’ve had a chance over the last couple of days to study the presentations that Eirgrid and the Commission for the Regulation of Utilities have provided the government. Having looked at those presentations I am confident that we will avoid blackouts and brownouts this winter, but nobody can guarantee it for certain because there are certain factors outside of our control.”
At a Fine Gael parliamentary party meeting, Varadkar told his colleagues that he was “reasonably confident” that blackouts would not occur this winter.
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