11.1 Introduction

Closeddate_range22 Dec, 2020, 9:00am - 12 Mar, 2021, 5:00pm

11.1 Introduction

Kilkenny County Council is a signatory to the Covenant of Mayors – a European cooperation movement involving Regional and Local Authorities which is aimed at increasing energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy. Renewable energy sources are defined here as inexhaustible natural resources which occur naturally and repeatedly in the environment. These sources include the wind, oceans, bio (plant life) and falling water. Kilkenny County Council has also signed up to the Climate Action Charter for Local Authorities[1] which commits the local government sector to a range of measures including: delivering a 50% improvement in energy efficiency by 2030 (compared to the 2009 baseline); exercising planning and regulatory roles to help improve climate outcomes in the wider community and beyond the public sector, by developing and implementing robust evidenced based policy and standards on climate action, through appropriate and relevant adaptation and mitigation measures. Kilkenny County Council has also recently joined the European Climate Alliance (in September, 2020), which among other things commits the Council to reduce CO2 emissions by 10 percent every 5 years, equivalent to the halving of per capita emissions by 2030 (from a 1990 baseline).

Ireland and Kilkenny have excellent renewable energy (RE) resources, which will be a critical and growing component of Irish energy supply to 2020 and beyond. Indigenous renewable energy already plays a vital role in our domestic fuel mix. It also increases sustainability through the use of clean power sources and enhances energy security by reducing Ireland’s dependence on imported fuels. Ireland has established an ambitious and challenging target of increasing reliance on renewables from 12.8% to 34.1% by 2030, 70% of which is renewable electricity.

Kilkenny County Council passed a Sustainable Energy Action Plan in January 2017 and are monitoring and reporting this through 3 Counties Energy Agency every 2 years on www.energyhub.ie

From data collected, CO2 emissions values for Kilkenny began moving off the 2020 trajectory as we moved out of recession period earlier in the last decade. 

Figure 11.1 Projected and Actual Carbon Dioxide Emissions for Kilkenny 2006-2016

Based on the 2017 data oil remains the highest source of energy for County Kilkenny at 56.82%, followed by electricity at 19.85%. Transport, which is primarily fossil fuel based, consumes approximately 37.8% of energy, with residential use slightly behind at 36.26% of energy use.

Figure 11.2  Energy Consumption Kilkenny 2017                                      Figure 11.3 Energy Consumption Kilkenny 2017

By Fuel type                                                                                       By Sector

This chapter outlines the mechanisms to support the increased development of renewable energy production county wide and across communities and citizens in accordance with the EU Renewable Energy Directive 2018/2001/EU.

11.1.1 National Renewable Energy Targets

Table 11.1: Trajectories for renewable heating and cooling, electricity and transport[2]

Renewable Energy Share (RES)

Percentage Share by 2020

Percentage Share by 2030

Percentage Share by 2040

RES Heating & Cooling

7.8%

24%

26.7%

RES Electricity

36.5%

70%

69.1%

RES Transport

5.8%

13.4%

17.8%

Overall RES Share 

12.8%

34.1%

40.2%

It is the policy of this Plan to:

  • Support the implementation of the NECP (National Energy & Climate Plan (NECP) 2021-2030 https://www.dccae.gov.ie/en-ie/energy/publications/Pages/National-Energy--Climate-Plan-(NECP)-2021-2030.aspx ) and associated adaptation & mitigation measures
  • Support the implementation of Ireland’s Transition to a Low Carbon Energy Future
  • Support the implementation of the All of Government Climate Action Plan (CAP) and associated adaptation and mitigation measures
  • Support the sustainable development, maintenance and upgrading of electricity and gas network grid infrastructure to integrate a renewable energy sources and ensure our national and regional energy system remains safe, secure and ready to meet increased demand as the regional economy grows.
  • Support the sustainable development of renewable wind energy at appropriate locations and related grid infrastructure in the region in compliance with National Wind Energy Guidelines and the Regional Spatial and Economic Strategy 2019.
  • Support the sustainable development of renewable solar photovoltaic energy at appropriate locations and related grid infrastructure in the region in conjunction with the Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS).
  • Support alternative forms of renewable energy for the electricity, heat, and transport sectors 
  • Support the integration of indigenous renewable (Non fossil) Compressed Gas, either by local virtual pipelines or grid injection into existing or future Fossil Gas Lines.

Due to the ambitious targets set out by the Irish Government for renewables, this City and County Development Plan sets out a Renewable Energy Strategy here, taking into account the ever-changing landscape and the demand for renewable energy supply.   

In this Chapter the policy context for all renewables is outlined.  This includes an analysis of each type of renewable energy within the county, covering three aspects as follows:  

  • An analysis of the resource potential,
  • An outline of development management guidelines including potential impacts and
  • Objectives and policies for their future development. 

Objective:

11A     To support and facilitate the provision of energy in accordance with Ireland’s Transition to a Low Carbon Energy Future by means of the maintenance and upgrading of electricity and gas network grid infrastructure and by integrating renewable energy sources and ensuring our national and regional energy system remains safe, secure and ready to meet increased demand as the regional economy grows over the period of the plan.

 

[1] Climate Action Charter for Local Authorities, countersigned by the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment on behalf of Government 2019

[2] Table 5 – DCCAE National Energy & Climate Plan 2021 – 2030

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