At a meeting of the All Ireland Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) Forum in Fingal County Hall, Swords, members expressed support for the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland’s continued membership of the European Union in relation to energy policy. Speaking afterwards, Forum Chair Councillor Mark Dearey said, “If the UK leaves the EU, it would no longer be subject to EU rules on climate change policy and would no longer need to meet renewable energy targets. This could have some worrying implications for electricity markets on the island of Ireland.” “For instance the UK could decide to prioritise cheap fossil-based electricity, rather than renewables, making it harder for Irish companies to compete until the cost of renewables falls below the cost of fossil fuels. It would also make it difficult to restart discussions about exporting renewable electricity from Ireland to the UK.” The meeting heard from NFLA Policy Advisor Pete Roche, who outlined how grid interconnections between North and South and between the island of Ireland and the UK help to balance intermittent renewable supplies. These have seen unprecedented but welcome growth in recent years. If the UK were to leave the EU, Ireland could find itself having to build unnecessarily expensive connections to France, pushing up prices for Irish consumers.
NFLA 14th June 2016 read more »