“2030 Vision – The Future of Energy in Ireland” conference was organised by Good Energies Alliance Ireland (GEAI) in September 2013 to look at the choices of energy sources that Ireland has to make in the future. The key speaker was Deborah Rogers from Texas, and others included Eamon Ryan, Leader of the Green Party, who gave an inspirational talk on the potential of renewable energy sources, in particular wind energy, to substitute for hydrocarbons. The conference was part-funded by Leitrim County Council through the Agenda 21 programme.
The general purpose of the conference was to discuss moving from the use of fossil fuels to new sustainable sources of energy and providing it in a environment-friendly way. The speakers gave presentations describing solutions to those challenges. The issue of shale gas extraction was also discussed. Key speaker Deborah Rogers explained how shale gas is not economically viable. Below is the list of the speakers with their presentations.
Eamon Ryan is a politician and leader of the Irish Green Party. In his presentation, Eamonn spoke about his belief in an energy revolution in Ireland in the near future. He foresaw that in a few years, all electricity would be generated from renewable energy sources and that the use of fossil fuels would plummet.
Link to presentation: Towards 2030 – A different world, a different vision
Matt Kennedy is Low Carbon Technologies Manager at Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI). The SEAI foresees that whereas our peak electricity demand will exceed 48,000 GWatts per year by 2050, wind generation has the potential to exceed peak demand around 2030, indicating that Ireland has the potential to become a significant energy exporter by 2050.
Link to presentation: Energy Roadmaps to 2030 and beyond
Michael Walsh is the Project Manager of the Marex project. The Marex project combines wind energy with hydro-energy – wind turbines generate electicity that, as well as contributing to the national grid, also powers a turbine that pumps sea-water to a reservoir on top of a cliff in County Mayo. This ensures a steady supply of power.
Link to presentation: MAREX project
David Taylor is Chairman of the Energy Institute, Ireland. He is the former Chief Executive of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, and is the Principal in David Taylor & Associates. David spoke about the importance of dialogue between all sectors involved in energy project – industry, statutory agencies, government and community. He stressed the importance of keeping a balance in all discussions and in looking for outcomes that give the best result for all sides.
Deborah Rogers lives in Texas, US. She has worked as a financial consultant for several major Wall Street firms, including Merrill Lynch and Smith Barney. She is also the founder of Energy Policy Forum, a consultancy and educational forum dedicated to policy and financial issues regarding shale gas and renewable energy.
In her presentation, Deborah makes the case that the shale gas industry is essential non-viable, depending more on asset sell-on and a continuing threadmill of drilling than on sustainable production.