On 7 March, the government gave the green light to the new framework and policy developed by the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications (DECC) for Phase Two offshore wind projects. The Phase Two Policy Statement, published on 10 March, also comprises proposals for the long-term development of offshore wind after 2030.

The Irish Phase Two projects are those that are set to be procured after the country completes its Phase One auction, now underway. The projects from the first phase are expected to apply for planning permission later this year after competing in the country’s first offshore renewable energy auction, set to open in April.

The first auction to take place for Phase Two offshore wind farms will launch by the end of 2023.

With Phase Two projects, the Irish government plans to select further capacity needed to reach the 5 GW target of offshore wind generation capacity by 2030.

The government says that, while it expects to secure a large portion of the 5 GW target through Phase One offshore wind farms, their combined capacity totals around 4.4 GW and some projects may fail to secure a route to market or development consent. Therefore, additional offshore projects will be needed to meet the 2030 target.

For the new set of rules it now established for the projects that will bring this additional capacity, the government says they will “provide clarity for all stakeholders regarding the development of offshore wind as Ireland moves to the enduring, plan led, offshore regime”.

Source: Offshore wind