Our Strategic Plan for 2019 – 21 has been developed during a period of significant change for the island’s electricity and gas retail industry. This level of change is set to continue as we face the twin challenges of decarbonising electricity at a time of unprecedented growth in electricity demand while being active participants in the redesign of the wholesale and retail markets. The new Integrated Single Energy Market (ISEM), developed to facilitate the maximum volume of renewables onto the energy system, combined with the SMART Programme in the Republic of Ireland will fundamentally change the market environments in Ireland. They will facilitate greater engagement by our customers, than ever before, both in how they consume electricity and the services that will derive from it.
Decarbonisation makes sense for an island that is reliant on imported fuels, that has a unique composition given the importance of agriculture but also has the second highest penetration of wind in Europe. While there is no roadmap that we can copy, this strategy provides direction towards our vision of “a decarbonised future powered by electricity”. We believe that a decarbonised electricity system will decarbonise society and move transport and heating away from fossil fuels. Our Members are fully committed to leading this vital journey of transition and working with others to accelerate the rate of decarbonisation and electrification.
To make this transition to a decarbonised future we will need an efficient and competitive energy market that supports sustainable investment in our sector. This investment will drive Ireland’s competitiveness and ability to deliver choice and value for customers. However, there is a need for increased urgency to deliver on Ireland’s ambitions and fulfil our commitments to the Paris agreement. Time is running out, failure to implement policy options now reduces our options in the years post-2030. In this complex transition, the EAI will be fully engaged with our stakeholders in a manner that is authoritative, evidence based and constructive on the issues that are common and relevant to our members. We look forward to implementing our strategy and invite you to join with us on the journey.