Pat Rabbitte, Ireland’s minister for communications, energy and natural resources, and UK energy secretary, Ed Davey, yesterday signed a memorandum of understanding to speed plans to allow Irish wind farms to export electricity to Britain.
The two politicians met in in Dublin to agree plans for co-operating more on energy at a conference hosted by the British Irish Chamber of Commerce.
Rabbitte said: “Ireland has the potential to generate far more wind energy than we could consume domestically. The opportunity to export this green power presents an opportunity for employment growth and export earnings which we must seize if we can.”
The agreement comes as conservationists are up in arms over plans to build 600ft wind turbines on Irish bogland. When built, the turbines will generate power for three million homes in the UK.
Is this, as Andrew Duncan, spokesman for the Lakelands Wind Information Group told the BBC, “an Irish solution to a British problem”, with political opposition to wind energy in the UK the real reason behind the plan?