Bord na Móna halts €1bn Clean Energy Hub due to lack of intergovernmental deal

Tuesday 15 April 2014 17.22
Bord na Móna Chairman John Horgan flies over the site of the new 40MW wind farm development at Bruckana
Bord na Móna Chairman John Horgan flies over the site of the new 40MW wind farm development at Bruckana

Bord na Móna has said it will not continue its €1bn Clean Energy Hub project to export renewable energy to the UK due to lack of an intergovernmental deal.

In a statement, the firm said the "absence of an intergovernmental agreement between the Irish and British governments, as required under EU Directive 2009/28/EC" was the reason why it was discontinuing the project.

That agreement was meant to facilitate the export of surplus green energy.

The company said it would be continuing with its programme of projects to develop renewable energy for the domestic market.

Last October, Bord na Móna announced plans for the Clean Energy Hub, claiming it would be the largest onshore wind farm development in Europe.

The decision to scrap the energy hub project means it will not be proceeding with plans for up to 600 turbines on cutaway bog sites in Offaly and Kildare.

However, it will advance instead with proposals and projects already under way for around 140 turbines.

Bord Na Móna Communications Manager Pat Fitzgerald said the absence of a market in the UK for the 2 GW electricity project, initially launched, meant the vision outlined previously was not now feasible.

However, he said Bord na Móna would be searching for more opportunities all the time for the domestic Irish market demands.

Unlike the other competitors for the UK market, Bord na Móna has no agreements in place with any landowners, as it intended to build most of the turbines on its own cutaway bog and had sought a commercial partner for the rest of the project.