To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the progress towards achieving the interim offshore wind energy targets set out in the Climate Action Plan for 2025; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
The Climate Action Plan includes, inter alia, a suite of actions to decarbonise the electricity sector and boost the quantity of renewable generation in order to meet our target of 70% of demand from renewable sources by 2030; the Plan commits to connecting at least 3.5GW of Offshore Wind by 2030.
In order to achieve this my Department is working closely with the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government on the development of a new, streamlined consenting regime for offshore renewable energy which will modernise and streamline the marine development management and enforcements systems. This new regime will replace existing State and development consent regimes and streamline arrangements on the basis of a single consent principle.
My Department have also established a working group on the Framework for Offshore Electricity Grid. This group will assess the options available for a suitable offshore grid model for Ireland allowing us to develop an offshore grid model informed by and aligned to Government Policy such as the forthcoming National Marine Planning Framework.
To support the delivery of the national ambition to further decrease our dependence on foreign fossil fuels my Department is also developing a new Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS) which will assist Ireland in meeting its renewable energy contributions out to 2030 by providing supports to a range of technologies including offshore wind projects..
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