In today’s Electrek Green Energy Brief (EGEB):

  • Ireland opens a consultation of its first offshore wind auction.
  • North Carolina’s governor is about to sign a major clean energy bill. Here are 3 standouts.
  • UnderstandSolar is a free service that links you to top-rated solar installers in your region for personalized solar estimates. Tesla now offers price matching, so it’s important to shop for the best quotes. Click here to learn more and get your quotes. — *ad.

Offshore wind in Ireland

The Republic of Ireland’s Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications today opened a consultation on the country’s first auction to supply electricity from offshore wind under the Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (ORESS 1), which provides support to renewable electricity projects in Ireland.

Ireland’s first offshore auction is a step toward meeting its goals of up to 80% clean electricity by 2030, with 5 gigawatts coming from offshore wind.

The Irish government website notes:

The aim of this targeted consultation is to engage stakeholders and gather feedback on aspects of the Terms and Conditions to ensure the efficient and economical delivery of renewable electricity projects under ORESS 1. Views are being sought from all interested parties.

Eamon Ryan, minister for the environment, climate, and communications, said:

The growth of offshore wind energy will play a major role in securing a supply of sustainable electricity for homes and businesses all over Ireland and will allow us to electrify sectors such as heat and transport. It will also play a key role in meeting our climate goals – to reduce overall emissions by 51% by 2030 and to reach ‘net zero’ by 2050.

Power Technology reported in July that “Offshore Wind Limited (OWL), a joint venture (JV) of Cobra and Flotation Energy, is set to develop two offshore wind farms in Ireland with a combined capacity of 2.5GW.” That consists of 1 GW of fixed-bottom offshore wind off the Dublin coast and 1.5 GW of floating offshore wind off the southeast coast.

OWL delivered the Kincardine offshore floating wind farm in Scotland (read below).

Read more: Final turbine is in place at the world’s largest floating offshore wind farm

North Carolina clean energy bill

Governor Roy Cooper (D-NC) and bipartisan legislature leaders announced a deal on a clean energy bill that is now called the Energy Solutions for North Carolina bill. Cooper is poised to sign the bill, which was ratified and sent to him on October 7, into law. Here are three highlights in the bill:

  • The North Carolina Utilities Commission must reduce emissions by 70% by 2030 and achieve net zero by 2050.
  • 45% of solar power must come from a competitive bidding process among independent power producers and 55% from public utilities, “which will help reduce costs and encourage innovation.” (North Carolina is also pushing for offshore wind power, with targets of 2.8 gigawatts (GW) of offshore wind energy off the North Carolina coast by 2030 and 8 GW by 2040.)
  • Duke Energy and other North Carolina utilities will have to use securitization at 50% to close some coal-fired power plants. There are currently eight coal plants in North Carolina, and they source coal from other states, primarily West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Kentucky. By 2019, coal-fired power plants provided less than 25% of the electricity generated in the state. 

Read more: North Carolina sets first-ever targets for offshore wind

Photo: “Dawn2Dusk: TBEX South Dublin Coast Photography Tour | Dublin 2013” by hoomygumb is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

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