Ireland will fail to meet its 2020 European emission targets

Ireland will fail to meet its 2020 European emission targets

Figures released by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) indicate that while Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions will comply with its Kyoto Protocol obligations (2008–2012), Ireland is at significant risk of not meeting our EU 2020 targets even under the best-case scenario.

EPA projections for the period 2012 to 2020 show:

*Ireland can comply with its Kyoto Protocol greenhouse gas reduction obligations for the first commitment period (2008–2012).

*Ireland is required to reduce its emissions by 20% by 2020, however, these projections indicate that we will breach our annual obligations under the EU 2020 target from 2016 onwards in the best-case scenario.

* Strong projected growth in emissions from transport and agriculture are the key contributors to this trend.

For action to be taken to tackle climate change, individual countries need to estimate the amount of greenhouse gases they emit and how much they are likely to emit in the future. The figures published by the EPA show the projected trends for greenhouse gases up to 2020 and give a picture of Ireland’s ability to meet EU and international targets with respect to greenhouse gas emissions. Projections are updated annually to take account of new information and show two scenarios – one based on existing policies and measures and the other on existing policies plus all planned policies and measures that are currently known.

Dara Lynott, Deputy Director General of EPA, comments: “Reductions inIreland’s greenhouse gases to-date are, primarily, a direct result of the current economic recession and economic outlook for the future. Ireland cannot rely on recession to meet our long term carbon reduction requirements and needs to develop as a low carbon and resource efficient economy. All sectors of the economy must contribute to emission reductions with a strong focus on those sectors – transport and agriculture – that dominate our emissions profile. Significant reductions are needed in the transport and agriculture sectors which are currently showing an increasing trend in emissions into the future.”

Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions profile is unique in the dominance of the agriculture sector. Emissions from the transport sector are also significant. By 2020 transport and agriculture are projected to account for nearly 80% ofIreland’s emissions not accounted for under the Emissions Trading Scheme. Under the most ambitious reduction scenario, transport and agriculture emissions are projected to both increase by 12% by 2020. This scenario assumes that ambitious targets are met for renewable fuel penetration, electric vehicle rollout and targets under the Food Harvest 2020.

Dr Eimear Cotter, Senior Manager at EPA, says: “While cost-effective greenhouse gas mitigation options may be limited in agriculture and transport, reductions in both of these sectors will need to be achieved in the context of increasing emissions. Economic incentives can play a role in reducing emissions by stimulating a change in behavioural patterns. Areas that can make a difference include using resources more efficiently, travel behaviour, farming practice, energy efficiency and societal engagement.”

The EPA Projections of greenhouse gas emissions to 2020 are available on the EPA website at:

Reblogged from Energy and Environment magazine


About kingstonrenewableenergy

Kingston Renewable Energy (KRE), Hydropower products, wind energy, renewable energy products, We manufacture, supply and install. Richard Kingston KRE is the home of Fluxy, a beautiful Irish made wind turbine designed to last several life-times, and a host of other Hydro products branded under KRE hydro. KRE HYDRO- KRE are currently installing a range of Hydro products including high head low flow systems and low head high flow. These are pelton and Turgo types for high head, crossflow Banki turbines for medium to low head and Powerpal for Ultra low head. We also plan to introduce a custom timber/steel/aluminium waterwheel service for those of you who are lucky enough to have disused mills on their land and who would like to restore them to their former glory (and make a healthy profit in the process). All hydro installations are custom designed. This is necessary because everybody's land and water resource is different and to benefit from the highest efficiency and lowest payback time the hydro system must be customized according to what flow, penstock length required, and what head is available. Hydropower is currently by far the most cost effective renewable resource in Ireland under the existing Feed in tariff structure and export rate of 9c per unit (wholesale rate for bigger systems is €0.087/kWh). It is surprising how much energy is to be harvested from even a small stream and we are offering 4 to 7 year payback times on average and high profits thereafter. KRE FLUXY- It has been a long journey from when I originally set out to buy a wind turbine to power my own house in 2007 and discovered that the existing machines on offer in the market failed to meet my desires as a customer; that is, to possess an aesthetically designed machine with a low embodied carbon footprint and a long design lifespan. This led to my resolve to make this a possibility as I knew there were other like minded folks out there who had the same needs when buying into renewable energy. I have always been a keen environmental activist and had a strong understanding of engineering and material sciences which enabled me to see failings in the high tech electronically controlled machines commonly available today. These weaknesses come from over complicating the wind system with servo motors, sensors, gear trains, relays and logic circuits; fine for large utility scale turbines which are constantly monitored and have continual maintenance on site but not for a small wind turbine in the back yard to run the house. I could see that wind turbines needed to be brought back to a less complicated yet modern design that would withstand time and the turbulent and violent winds we see in Ireland and fulfilling the old engineers adage of ‘KISS’ or ‘keep it simple stupid’. With less component parts, there are less things to go wrong. My vision was to create a machine that offered the benefits of being an economic investment, a positive for the environment and also to be a design piece that our customers are proud to have flying in their grounds. And so, I present you with the fully mechanical Kingston Renewable Energy Fluxy wind turbine. Please feel free to contact us at any time if you have any questions or think you may have a good wind site. We will happily do a site assessment come rain or shine. Stay posted for the monthly blogs from our inspirational team here at KRE. Check out our latest installments in our crusade to get higher feed-in tariffs in Ireland so that we can compete with the rest of Europe in the micro-generation stakes. The Hydro section of our website will be updated shortly to show our newest installations and showcase our products. Yours sincerely, Richard Kingston

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