A Review of Irish Energy Policy issue 21 by John Fitzgerald

By John Fitzgerald

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Then the task of policymakers is to choose the least cost way of producing the optimal reduction in potential risk. This is not a straightforward task and requires the complex analyses of risks and associated mitigation costs. Security of supply is not just about physical security. It would be extremely rare that there would be a complete physical interruption to supply of oil or gas. However, shortages in supply could manifest themselves in a dramatic rise in price rather than an actual physical interruption.

In the absence of a fully secure long-term EU gas supply, one approach, not already discussed, is the possibility of using alternative fuels to gas in electricity generation. The Moneypoint coal-fired generating station will probably remain in operation till around 2025. Given the lead time on building such replacement generation a decision will have to be taken around 2015, a decade before the plant closes, on a possible replacement. As discussed above, replacing the current large coal-fired station with a nuclear station is unlikely to be economic unless there is substantial progress in developing small-scale nuclear plants.

EirGrid, 2008. pdf Eirgrid, 2010. “All Island TSO Facilitation of Renewables Studies”, Dublin: Erigrid. , 2003. “The Macro-Economic Implications of Gas Dependence”, ESRI Working Paper No. 149, Dublin: The Economic and Social Research Institute. , 2004.

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