Northern Ireland has made strides in its green energy efforts, with wind power playing a pivotal role. The latest reports reveal that locally generated wind power saved the region an impressive £243 million in 2023.

According to the annual report from Wind Energy Ireland and a study by energy specialists Baringa, without the contribution of wind power, an additional £176 million would have been spent on gas for generating power. Furthermore, nearly £70 million more would have been spent on carbon credits to burn the gas.

This substantial saving has also led to a significant reduction in emissions. Approximately 0.9 million tonnes of carbon were saved, equivalent to the carbon output of 200,000 homes.

Renewable energy, predominantly wind power, now accounts for about half of the power generated in Northern Ireland. As per Stormont’s Department for the Economy, 47.4% of total electricity consumption in the country was generated from renewable sources in the year leading up to September 2023. Of this, a staggering 83.8% was generated by wind power.

However, despite these encouraging numbers, experts indicate that development in the sector is facing hurdles. Steven Agnew, the director of RenewableNI, has pointed out that planning issues and grid development have caused a stall in investment. He has called for the urgent establishment of a taskforce to get Northern Ireland back on track to meet its ambitious goal of generating 80% of its electricity consumption from renewable energy by 2030.

The success of wind power in Northern Ireland serves as a testament to the potential of renewable energy. It not only offers a sustainable solution to our power needs but also drives significant savings and reduces carbon emissions.

Northern Ireland’s example provides a roadmap for other regions to harness the power of the wind and realize its economic, environmental, and societal benefits.

Source: BBC.