Advertisement
If you have a new account but can't post, please email Niamh on [email protected] for help to verify your email address. Thanks :)
New AMA with a US police officer (he's back!). You can ask your questions here

We're going to max out the power in 2026.

  • 23-09-2019 8:35am
    #1
    Closed Accounts Posts: 40,086 ✭✭✭✭ Harry Palmr


    Is the warning from the ESB network eirgrid with the expansion of data centers, the switch from carbon heating, driving and the closing of Moneypoint and the Midlands stations.

    https://www.businesspost.ie/news/data-centres-loss-moneypoint-spark-energy-crisis-452904

    Given the tight schedule outlined and our failure to get big infrastructure to the build stage quickly the interconnectors could be very warm for a few years.


«1

Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,935 ✭✭✭ dashoonage


    ****ing paywalls


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,743 ✭✭✭ Smiles35


    Ah, It will be fine. A few ad's to the television to remind us to switch off our lights when we don't need them.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,568 ✭✭✭ K.Flyer


    Smiles35 wrote: »
    Ah, It will be fine. A few ad's to the television to remind us to switch off our lights when we don't need them.

    Some of us were talking about this over the weekend after watching the recent demos.
    There would be far less emission issues if people stopped using electricity unnecessarily.
    Everything from unplugging chargers, switching off lights, not leaving t.v. sets and other appliances on standy, switch them all off when not in use. So much unnecessary electricity used in the average home daily.
    But one of the biggest culprits are commercial buildings. Drive around Dublin after dark and the amount of office blocks etc with all the lights left on throughout the night is ridiculous.
    Now we have a new kid on the block to up the demand on the infrastructure after the push for electric cars.. Heat Pumps.
    These electricity munchers run all day and night and our glorious leader wants them fitted everywhere.


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 60,977 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    The total usage from plugged in phone chargers and standby devices in an average house would be the equivalent of having one old fashioned lightbulb left. It's overstated


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,142 ✭✭✭ prunudo


    I notice there is a big push for domestic dwellers to have air to water pumps, solar panel's. Are the same conditions put on commercial buildings? The flat roofs on all the warehousing would make ideal locations for solar panels.


  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 8,568 ✭✭✭ K.Flyer


    L1011 wrote: »
    The total usage from plugged in phone chargers and standby devices in an average house would be the equivalent of having one old fashioned lightbulb left. It's overstated

    That's in one houshold, now multiply it out by hundreds of thousands if not mulitple millions of homes worldwide.
    Plenty of other domestic non essential electric usage left on 24 / 7, it all adds up. Factor in all the non- essential electrical usage not only in homes, but public and commercial buildings, it very quickly adds up to a colossal unnecessary use of electrical energy Worldwide. Most of which contributes hugely to the environmental issues either through carbon emissions or nuclear waste.

    Turn Off The Lights.


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 60,977 Mod ✭✭✭✭ L1011


    The usage is so low that multiplying it up still comes to very little

    This is not 1990. The standby power consumption of devices has fallen drastically since the messaging about turning stuff off was first given then. You aren't keeping CRTs warm or suffering significant vampiric loss from transformers anymore because they simply aren't used.

    Safe the effort for something that'll actually make a difference.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 20,990 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    Any TV sold in the EU over the last 10 years can only use a maximum of 0.5w in standby. That is feck all, don't worry about it.

    Oh and don't put smart plugs on them, I've seen Smart plugs use 3w, so more power.

    Turn off lights, yes, in particular old style bulbs. However even better to move to LED which only use between 3w and 6w (compared to 60 to 100W for old style bulbs). Though turning them off is still a good idea. The movement to LED's is saving serious amounts of power.

    Oh and moving from old style CRT TV's or old Plasma flat panel TV's can save serious power. I actually worked out that moving from my old plasma to a new OLED would save so much power that it would actually pay for the TV over ten years in electricity savings! Though do put the TV into Standby when not using it. Modern TV in use is about 130W, standby 0.5W.

    EV's won't be a major issue. They are usually charged overnight and we have a massive over abundance of unused power at night time, so EV's soaking up that extra power to use during the day is considered a major positive, rather then any sort of negative. Specially when you consider that the wind typically blows harder in Ireland at night time, an EV charging at night even at the moment would be using close to 75% wind power overnight.

    Heat pumps, the idea is that you first highly insulate your home. Not that you just throw a heat pump on an old drafty house. Highly insulated homes need feck all heating to start with. The heat pumps barely run on homes insulated like this, so will use very little power. Oh and BTW gas and oil boilers also use electricity to run. Moving to heat pumps means that we can take advantage of the electricity grid which is getting significantly greener every year, rather then oil/gas.

    As for Moneypoint. Funny enough it has barely been running at all for the past year and we have been getting by just fine. It has been shutdown for months for repair work etc. and almost no one noticed. Today just 4% of our power is coming from coal.

    By 2026 the Celtic Interconnector to France and all the lovely Nuclear power will be built and with a capacity equivalent to Moneypoint which will likely be shutdown then finally. Also loads power wind farms built by then and new battery storage plants.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,707 ✭✭✭ Praetorian


    I agree with everything BK said.

    It was also mentioned in the thread that business's waste huge amounts of power. I totally agree with that. All the lights being left on 24/7 is so wasteful. A lot of big companies also keep the heat on all winter 24/7. I just don't understand that. My own business uses around 10,000-12,000 euro of electricity per year. I'm constantly trying to make improvements to this through investing in better insulation / led lights / we put light sensors in bathrooms and corridors and finally better heating controls (nests) etc. I gave tenants access to their respective nests in case they need to work odd hours or weekends, rather than the old habit of just leaving their heating on all the time. But admittedly it's tough to get our own staff to agree to "reasonable temperatures". Thats another argument.

    As a country, I think we have been incredibly successful with wind and I believe that success will continue on land and then offshore. The modern A rated homes I've seen are amazingly efficient. I've no major issues with the data centres popping up, but I always thought the heat they generated could be somehow used to heat homes / water etc.

    If seems like we are a decade behind some of our European neighbours in terms of being able to feed back excess solar energy back into the grid. The ESB are still not installing smart metres in 2019. We just got a new metre installed this week and it's a 30 euro "piece of junk" as the ESB engineer described it. Last year I tried to go down the solar route for our business, but in reality the figures just don't add up. It would if we could feed back into the grid.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,141 ✭✭✭✭ is_that_so


    Apparently ESB Networks have started on smart meters according to this.
    https://www.esbnetworks.ie/existing-connection/meters-readings/smart-meter-upgrade


  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 158 ✭✭ vrusinov


    Praetorian wrote: »
    I've no major issues with the data centres popping up, but I always thought the heat they generated could be somehow used to heat homes / water etc.

    Datacenters produce a lot of warm, but not hot enough air. This air is not hot enough to boil water, or spin turbine, or to be transported over a long distance.

    So the best scenario right now is that it is used to heat offices directly attached to DC building, and there are couple of places where they heat swimming pools: https://www.eniday.com/en/technology_en/warming-swimming-pools-data-centres/ though I imagine top up heating will be still required for these pools.


    The upside is Ireland is almost ideal for datacenters: it is almost never too hot or too cold so they can be cooled essentially by a bunch of giant fans. So thinking globally I wish more of them was in Ireland as opposed to e.g. US where you often need closed system with compressors/coolant/etc.


  • Registered Users Posts: 18,741 ✭✭✭✭ Muahahaha


    Praetorian wrote: »
    My own business uses around 10,000-12,000 euro of electricity per year.

    Praetorian that is some bill. Can I ask do you change electricity provider every 12 months? Its an easy way to save 10-15% off your electricity bills, being loyal to them costs you money. Have found Panda Power good for commercial electricity in the past, iirc they also give further discounts if you bundle your waste collection with them too.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,707 ✭✭✭ Praetorian


    Yes we definitely change at the end of every contract. To me it's absolutely insane that the power companies can double a price after a contract ends. I think many businesses forget to renegotiate or change providers.

    It would be great if the regulator made the power companies notify people when contracts end and that the price is about to double.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,488 ✭✭✭ CelticRambler


    bk wrote: »
    the Celtic Interconnector to France and all the lovely Nuclear power ...

    Don't be counting on France for nuclear power! France is trying to wean itself off nuclear, not because it's not "green" but because it's increasingly unreliable. It was never enough to cover the country's needs in the winter, but now the old plants are falling apart (shut down for months at a time every year for repairs); the functionning sites couldn't run during this summer because it was the riverwater was too hot to cool them; and the new sites are a long way from coming on-stream because they're being built on the back of cheap & cheerful tenders by people who don't know how to mix concrete.

    What Ireland could learn from France are two simple measures: require streetlights to be turned off from 11pm-6am; and require shop windows & not-so-important historic monuments to "go dark" during the same period.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 20,990 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    Don't be counting on France for nuclear power! France is trying to wean itself off nuclear, not because it's not "green" but because it's increasingly unreliable. It was never enough to cover the country's needs in the winter, but now the old plants are falling apart (shut down for months at a time every year for repairs); the functionning sites couldn't run during this summer because it was the riverwater was too hot to cool them; and the new sites are a long way from coming on-stream because they're being built on the back of cheap & cheerful tenders by people who don't know how to mix concrete.

    Actually France has decided to keep it's Nuclear plants going and actually have long term plans to invest in new ones and refurbish old.

    It is true that they are under pressure from environmentalists to increase renewable energy use, which they are doing, but they are actually doing this by primarily building interconnectors to neighbouring countries like Ireland, so that they can tap into their renewable power and not need to build as much of their own.

    It is a pretty smart plan. Damn sight better then the stupidity that went on in Germany when they shut down their Nuclear plants.
    What Ireland could learn from France are two simple measures: require streetlights to be turned off from 11pm-6am; and require shop windows & not-so-important historic monuments to "go dark" during the same period.

    The Irish government has a major scheme where it is funding the various councils around the country to switch street lighting to LED. That will save large amounts of power without the very serious safety concerns with switching off street lights at night.

    I agree partly about shops, but it isn't something that I feel we have a big issue with here in Ireland. Most shops in Ireland put shutters down at night anyway. Those that don't, like the couple of department stores have all switched to LED's anyway. This is more of a feel good measure then one that has any practical purpose.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,488 ✭✭✭ CelticRambler


    bk wrote: »
    Actually France has decided to keep it's Nuclear plants going and actually have long term plans to invest in new ones and refurbish old.

    Keep them going, yes, but reducing their role from providing (about) 85% of supply to 50% (see official govt position here, en français)

    The forced shutdown of several plants this summer (due to the heat) only reinforced the rationale behind the economic decisions that had already justified a switch from nuclear to other cheaper, more reliable sources ... that happened also to align with the environmental arguments.

    It's a similar story with regard to the interconnectors - they've been using them for years to get "green" electricity from the neighbours to the east, long before "renewable energy" was a talking point, because France has not been self-sufficient in electricity for a couple of decades now; recent plans are aimed at (a) improving self-sufficiency; and (b) having connections also to the west.

    One of the reasons why France ended up being a net importer is because nuclear was marketed to the public and to business as cheap and virtually unlimited, so they went all out on immersion heaters for hot water and storage heaters/electric radiators for space heating. All the effort now is on trying to get people not use electricity if they don't have to (they've even got a scheme that businesses can sign up to where they get a generous rebate if they allow their supply to be cut off when the system is under pressure).


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 20,990 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    Keep them going, yes, but reducing their role from providing (about) 85% of supply to 50% (see official govt position here, en français)

    A pure slight of hand. They are going to continue generating the same amount of power by Nuclear, they are just going to export it to their neighbours via interconnectors, while importing renewable wind power.

    It is a way to get "environmentalists" off their back who were creating political issues. They can claim to be increasing renewables, while not actually shutting down any of their Nuclear plants, it is a very smart move.
    The forced shutdown of several plants this summer (due to the heat) only reinforced the rationale behind the economic decisions that had already justified a switch from nuclear to other cheaper, more reliable sources ... that happened also to align with the environmental arguments.

    Every form of power generation has it's issues and it's pros and cons. Moneypoint was shutdown for almost a year this past year due to maintenance issues and no one even noticed or commented on it. Wind stops blowing, you don't generate power, etc.

    You are thinking too small, you need to look at the bigger picture of a highly integrated pan European grid.

    Each country can focus on what they do well to reduce carbon emissions, Ireland wind, Norway hydo, France Nuclear, etc. Non of them are perfect, but the point is each can support it's neighbour when needed.

    It's a similar story with regard to the interconnectors - they've been using them for years to get "green" electricity from the neighbours to the east, long before "renewable energy" was a talking point, because France has not been self-sufficient in electricity for a couple of decades now; recent plans are aimed at (a) improving self-sufficiency; and (b) having connections also to the west.

    One of the reasons why France ended up being a net importer is because nuclear was marketed to the public and to business as cheap and virtually unlimited, so they went all out on immersion heaters for hot water and storage heaters/electric radiators for space heating. All the effort now is on trying to get people not use electricity if they don't have to (they've even got a scheme that businesses can sign up to where they get a generous rebate if they allow their supply to be cut off when the system is under pressure).

    What?! French Nuclear has been ridiculously successful! France has some of the cheapest electricity rates in Europe, while also being one of the lowest carbon emitting countries in the world.

    It is brilliant that they run so much of their country off low carbon electricity. It means over the past decades they have saved pumping billions of tons of carbon into the atmosphere compared to their neighbours!

    Think of how much carbon we have pumped into the atmosphere over the past decades burning coal, oil and gas instead! And you think the French using low carbon electricity is a bad thing!

    Right this moment, France is producing just 64g of CO2/kWh, versus 192g for Ireland and 277g for the UK and 380g for Germany!

    Only Norway and Sweden do better.

    Also France produces more then enough electricity for their own needs. The reason why they are encouraging their own citizens to reduce electricity usage, is because France earns more money from selling power to their dirty neighbours, due to carbon trading.

    France is the largest exporter of electricity in the world and they earn €3 billion a year from these exports.

    In 2017 their export balance (exports - imports) was 38 TWh!

    Right now they are exporting:
    - 2719 MW to Germany
    - 2290 MW to Italy
    - 455 MW to Switzerland
    - 1446 MW to Belgium

    France is basically Europes battery. Their neighbours couldn't have half as much wind power without the support of Frances nuclear power.


  • Moderators, Regional Abroad Moderators Posts: 5,364 Mod ✭✭✭✭ aido79


    I wonder what effect cryptocurrencies will have on this in the future. I think it's astounding the amount of energy that goes into mining them but very little is ever said about it.
    Old article but gives some idea of the scale of what is consumed:

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/technology/2017/nov/27/bitcoin-mining-consumes-electricity-ireland


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,576 ✭✭✭ salonfire


    bk wrote: »
    A pure slight of hand. They are going to continue generating the same amount of power by Nuclear, they are just going to export it to their neighbours via interconnectors, while importing renewable wind power.

    It is a way to get "environmentalists" off their back who were creating political issues. They can claim to be increasing renewables, while not actually shutting down any of their Nuclear plants, it is a very smart move.



    Every form of power generation has it's issues and it's pros and cons. Moneypoint was shutdown for almost a year this past year due to maintenance issues and no one even noticed or commented on it. Wind stops blowing, you don't generate power, etc.

    You are thinking too small, you need to look at the bigger picture of a highly integrated pan European grid.

    Each country can focus on what they do well to reduce carbon emissions, Ireland wind, Norway hydo, France Nuclear, etc. Non of them are perfect, but the point is each can support it's neighbour when needed.




    What?! French Nuclear has been ridiculously successful! France has some of the cheapest electricity rates in Europe, while also being one of the lowest carbon emitting countries in the world.

    It is brilliant that they run so much of their country off low carbon electricity. It means over the past decades they have saved pumping billions of tons of carbon into the atmosphere compared to their neighbours!

    Think of how much carbon we have pumped into the atmosphere over the past decades burning coal, oil and gas instead! And you think the French using low carbon electricity is a bad thing!

    Right this moment, France is producing just 64g of CO2/kWh, versus 192g for Ireland and 277g for the UK and 380g for Germany!

    Only Norway and Sweden do better.

    Also France produces more then enough electricity for their own needs. The reason why they are encouraging their own citizens to reduce electricity usage, is because France earns more money from selling power to their dirty neighbours, due to carbon trading.

    France is the largest exporter of electricity in the world and they earn €3 billion a year from these exports.

    In 2017 their export balance (exports - imports) was 38 TWh!

    Right now they are exporting:
    - 2719 MW to Germany
    - 2290 MW to Italy
    - 455 MW to Switzerland
    - 1446 MW to Belgium

    France is basically Europes battery. Their neighbours couldn't have half as much wind power without the support of Frances nuclear power.

    How do the French keep their unions in check in the nuclear industry?
    We see the problems they cause for airlines.

    I wouldn't like to rely on such a strike happy union infested country to be our backup when the wind stops blowing.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 20,990 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    salonfire wrote: »
    How do the French keep their unions in check in the nuclear industry?
    We see the problems they cause for airlines.

    I wouldn't like to rely on such a strike happy union infested country to be our backup when the wind stops blowing.

    They pay them very well.

    We do the same here. Comparatively speaking, it doesn't really take that many people to run power stations and grids, compared to how important they are, so most governments tend to just look after them well compared to other sectors.


  • Advertisement
  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 4,397 Mod ✭✭✭✭ spacetweek


    Wasn't aware that France were such a big exporter of leccy.
    Good that we're hooking up to them so we can have a backup supply.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,141 ✭✭✭✭ is_that_so


    spacetweek wrote: »
    Wasn't aware that France were such a big exporter of leccy.
    We should hook up to them ASAP so we can have a backup supply.
    It's happening. EU helping foot the bill in a big way. God bless French nuclear power!

    https://www.irishtimes.com/business/energy-and-resources/eu-to-contribute-530m-to-1bn-irish-french-power-line-1.4037649


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 82 ✭✭✭ Bdjsjsjs


    bk wrote: »

    Heat pumps, the idea is that you first highly insulate your home. Not that you just throw a heat pump on an old drafty house. Highly insulated homes need feck all heating to start with. The heat pumps barely run on homes insulated like this, so will use very little power. Oh and BTW gas and oil boilers also use electricity to run. Moving to heat pumps means that we can take advantage of the electricity grid which is getting significantly greener every year, rather then oil/gas.
    Many people working in construction don't take the BER very seriously. It's a very weakly designed test and little attention is paid to quality control so many a rated homes are in fact very cold home. The other problem with highly efficient homes is that the occupants tend to keep their homes warm 24 7 which isn't how people behave in cold homes so the energy saving is far less than the theoretical savings. If you really want a want home you need to get the private sector version the passive house which is is extremely consistent.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 20,990 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    Bdjsjsjs wrote: »
    Many people working in construction don't take the BER very seriously. It's a very weakly designed test and little attention is paid to quality control so many a rated homes are in fact very cold home. The other problem with highly efficient homes is that the occupants tend to keep their homes warm 24 7 which isn't how people behave in cold homes so the energy saving is far less than the theoretical savings. If you really want a want home you need to get the private sector version the passive house which is is extremely consistent.

    I've lived most of my life in old draughty Irish homes, where we would spend a fortune on heating blasting away all day, with it barely making a difference.

    About 10 years ago I moved into a new build apartment, something like a B3 or B2.

    WOW what a difference. Not a single draught in the home, doesn't need any heating most of the year around and even in the coldest winters days, just need max 2 hours of gas heating for the place to stay toasty the whole day!

    My heating bill is a fraction of my parents old draughty house.

    I've a neighbour with a new build A2 home. Their energy bills are ridiculously low, almost not even worth talking about.

    Yes, in both mine and my neighbours home, they are comfortably warm 24/7, but the point is that it takes feck all energy to achieve that comfort level, certainly FAR less then old draughty Irish homes.

    Of course passive houses are even better, no argument there. But even A rated houses are pretty good compared to what we use to build in Ireland.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 82 ✭✭✭ Bdjsjsjs


    bk wrote: »
    I've lived most of my life in old draughty Irish homes, where we would spend a fortune on heating blasting away all day, with it barely making a difference.

    About 10 years ago I moved into a new build apartment, something like a B3 or B2.

    WOW what a difference. Not a single draught in the home, doesn't need any heating most of the year around and even in the coldest winters days, just need max 2 hours of gas heating for the place to stay toasty the whole day!

    My heating bill is a fraction of my parents old draughty house.

    I've a neighbour with a new build A2 home. Their energy bills are ridiculously low, almost not even worth talking about.

    Yes, in both mine and my neighbours home, they are comfortably warm 24/7, but the point is that it takes feck all energy to achieve that comfort level, certainly FAR less then old draughty Irish homes.

    Of course passive houses are even better, no argument there. But even A rated houses are pretty good compared to what we use to build in Ireland.

    An A rating is excellent if the house meets the predictions is if it's a fair classification but often the test is so sloppy a far lower rating is deserved than what is given


  • Registered Users Posts: 18,882 ✭✭✭✭ murphaph


    In a new build if you can't get it to passivhaus standards the best option IMO is a cheap a2w heat pump. A modern building, properly insulated and with attention paid to airtightness needs very little heat input, especially in Ireland where it just doesn't get that cold.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,188 ✭✭✭ lucernarian


    I'm not sure people are understanding how these interconnectors work, and that they are NOT a substitute for an actual power plant. These long distance, complex circuits come with reliability caveats and don't last forever.

    They increase exposure to problems in other grids, and they cannot be assumed to be some instant supply of energy, cause if France and Ireland both need immediate power then it almost doesn't matter what the spot price is, Ireland is not going to be able to take that power.

    As France can't really shut off its nuclear plants to match demand, I find it hard to see what use it can get from an Irish interconnector unless we happen to have surplus power to export at just the right time... If France had storage facilities for the extra energy we could export at night etc, then I'd see a lot more purpose to the interconnector.

    I'd honestly be happier seeing a 500 MW nuclear unit commissioned, but then the price of these plants are extraordinary and the far cheaper build cost of a 500 MW coal thermal plant would IMO allow many billions of euro to be used elsewhere in offsetting climate change.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 20,990 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    I'm not sure people are understanding how these interconnectors work, and that they are NOT a substitute for an actual power plant. These long distance, complex circuits come with reliability caveats and don't last forever.

    No power generation source last forever! They all need to be renowned or replaced over time.

    And if you think interconnectors are complex, then you don't want to go anywhere near the vastly more complex Nuclear power.
    They increase exposure to problems in other grids, and they cannot be assumed to be some instant supply of energy, cause if France and Ireland both need immediate power then it almost doesn't matter what the spot price is, Ireland is not going to be able to take that power.

    You should take a look at the map of all the interconnectors in Europe and how they all feed into one another, it is really eye opening. Even if France has high demand at the same time as us, they can just import from their neighbours and export to us.

    Of course the planners are very careful to ensure that there will be enough capacity across all the interconnectors, otherwise they wouldn't allow a new one to be built and they put in place Service level agreements (SLA's) on availablity, etc.
    As France can't really shut off its nuclear plants to match demand, I find it hard to see what use it can get from an Irish interconnector unless we happen to have surplus power to export at just the right time... If France had storage facilities for the extra energy we could export at night etc, then I'd see a lot more purpose to the interconnector.

    It is a political move more then anything else. They want to be seen to reduce their dependence on Nuclear and increase their usage of renewables. Buying wind power to Ireland, while selling Nuclear power to Ireland is a relatively cheap way to do this.
    I'd honestly be happier seeing a 500 MW nuclear unit commissioned, but then the price of these plants are extraordinary and the far cheaper build cost of a 500 MW coal thermal plant would IMO allow many billions of euro to be used elsewhere in offsetting climate change.

    Well we have a pretty new (it was only renewed a few years ago) 900MW coal plant sitting at Moneypoint, which has been barely been running at all over the past year and which the ESB has had to write off the cost of as it is now useless.

    The issue is that carbon pricing makes it much more expensive to run then a modern gas plant and even wind has become cheaper. They are no longer economic.

    We could build more gas power stations, but then we would never hit our carbon neutral goals and would receive big fines from the EU.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 20,990 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    And the ESB have just announced that they will be closing the two peat power plants next year:

    https://www.rte.ie/news/2019/1108/1089500-esb-power-plants/

    Very unfortunate for the staff involved, but good for the environment. Moneypoint will be the next on the chopping blocks.


  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 9,188 ✭✭✭ lucernarian


    bk wrote: »
    No power generation source last forever! They all need to be renowned or replaced over time.

    And if you think interconnectors are complex, then you don't want to go anywhere near the vastly more complex Nuclear power.



    You should take a look at the map of all the interconnectors in Europe and how they all feed into one another, it is really eye opening. Even if France has high demand at the same time as us, they can just import from their neighbours and export to us.

    Of course the planners are very careful to ensure that there will be enough capacity across all the interconnectors, otherwise they wouldn't allow a new one to be built and they put in place Service level agreements (SLA's) on availablity, etc.



    It is a political move more then anything else. They want to be seen to reduce their dependence on Nuclear and increase their usage of renewables. Buying wind power to Ireland, while selling Nuclear power to Ireland is a relatively cheap way to do this.



    Well we have a pretty new (it was only renewed a few years ago) 900MW coal plant sitting at Moneypoint, which has been barely been running at all over the past year and which the ESB has had to write off the cost of as it is now useless.

    The issue is that carbon pricing makes it much more expensive to run then a modern gas plant and even wind has become cheaper. They are no longer economic.

    We could build more gas power stations, but then we would never hit our carbon neutral goals and would receive big fines from the EU.

    Multiquote replies are so hard to read, so forgive me if I don't reply in kind. The point about interconnectors was reliability issues seem to impact them in a particular way - and such long distance links and reliability issues with them have been at the source of the world's most severe blackouts and energy crises (California, the East US/Canada blackouts etc).

    The predominant source of renewables is currently wind power. The metorological situations that result in low wind generation can cover >1 million square kms. Much of France could easily lie in the same sort of conditions giving us dry and calm weather. Nuclear power can't supplant storage technologies, which are the real answer to having a grid heavily dependent on variable renewables.


Advertisement