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Dáil Éireann debate -
Wednesday, 26 Nov 1986

Vol. 370 No. 3

Written Answers. - Natural Gas.


asked the Minister for Energy the plans he has to expand the use of natural gas having regard to the limitation imposed on BGE as a result of recent court proceedings; and if he will make a statement on the matter.


asked the Minister for Energy if he will make a statement on the present position of the dispute that exists between Bord Gáis and Marathon Oil over the quantity of gas to be supplied by Marathon for 1986 and subsequent years; the amount of the reduction in supply for 1986 as compared with 1985; and the financial implications of these reductions on the Bord's finances for 1986 and 1987.

I propose to take Question Nos. 21 and 37 together. Plans for the use of natural gas are based on the capture of the premium markets, where economically feasible, and the displacement of higher cost oil products. Since the Kinsale resource is finite, there is not a pressing need to find new outlets. In order to protect the interests of the Irish people, there may well be further developments on the legal front. For that reason I would not wish to make any comment on the recent court proceedings.

If we were ultimately to be confined to the quantity mentioned in those proceedings, this could have an effect on BGE's revenues. In the absence of relevant information it would not be possible to be specific on this point and in any event, it must be borne in mind that with the coming on stream of Moneypoint, the ESB demand for gas is declining significantly.