In the period 4 June 2007 to 23 January 2011, eight exploration licences were granted and eight wells were drilled offshore Ireland.
Minister Bruton will shortly publish an All of Government Climate Plan, which will set out policies that will cut our reliance on fossil fuels in electricity, transport, the built environment and other sectors. As part of this Plan, we will be taking actions to reach 70% renewable electricity by 2030. This would mean Ireland would have one of the highest levels of renewables in the world.
Fossil fuels will still be required to provide our remaining electricity needs and to provide a back-up supply when there is insufficient renewable energy on the grid, as well as to heat our homes as we transition towards renewable heating systems.
Halting exploration in the Irish offshore would have no impact on our greenhouse gas emissions. It would, however, mean that we would be fully reliant on fossil fuel imports.