High winds for weeks meant 45% of the country’s electricity last month came from wind, setting a new record.
This meant wind was the biggest single contributor to Ireland’s power needs during the month.
However, the unpredictable nature of the source was exposed with wind generating as much as three quarters of our needs on some days and as little as 1% on others.
The large volume of wind capacity over the period meant the amount of power generated from gas was 39%, down around a fifth on the previous month when wind power was less productive.
But as much as 79% of our power needs were provided by gas at certain points during the month when the wind was not blowing strongly.
At no point during the period did the amount of electricity coming from gas drop below 15%.
7% of power came from coal during the month.
“In the two months of October and February this year, wind energy was largest energy source of electricity generation in Ireland,” said Brian Mullins, Head of Regulatory Affairs at Gas Networks Ireland which compiled the data.
“In the other eight months of the year it was gas. Collectively, gas and wind have consistently delivered over 80% of Ireland’s electricity supplies this year.”
When other use outside of electricity generation are taken into account, gas demand overall was down 4% on the previous month 2% on the same month a year ago.
This was because October was particularly mild, with temperatures above average.
The price of gas on wholesale markets has fallen considerably in recent weeks as Europe experiences unseasonably warm condition.