Tuesday, 24 November 2020

Questions (179, 190)

Brendan Griffin

Question:

179. Deputy Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications his views on a matter (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37765/20]

View answer

Patrick Costello

Question:

190. Deputy Patrick Costello asked the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications the plans that exist to support LNG import terminals in the State; the departmental policy towards fracking and LNG terminals more generally; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [38161/20]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 179 and 190 together.

The Programme for Government sets out that, as Ireland moves towards carbon neutrality, it does not make sense to develop liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals that import fracked gas. The Programme for Government is clear that the Government does not support the importation of fracked gas and commits to developing a policy statement to establish that approach. 

My Department is developing the policy statement which includes consideration of any necessary legal/regulatory provisions. This includes detailed examination of the European energy and environmental frameworks, in which our national laws operate, to ensure the policy statement will be legally robust. Once finalised, I intend to bring the Policy Statement to Government for approval.

In addition, my Department is carrying out a review of the security of energy supply of Ireland’s electricity and natural gas systems which is focusing on the period to 2030 in the context of ensuring a sustainable pathway to 2050. The review will include a detailed technical analysis and a public consultation. A request for tender for the technical analysis has recently been published. 

The review will inform future policy in relation to natural gas supplies, gas storage, electricity interconnection, emergency reserves and other measures that would enhance our security of supply. This will be done in the context of the doubling of the electricity generated from renewable sources to 70% of Ireland’s final consumption and the achievement of net zero emissions by 2050.

I expect that the review will be completed by the end of 2021.