Wind Energy Oriented Renewable Plans Fared Badly
Surely if wind speeds are so high in Ireland as we are often told, then Ireland should be in the top 10 of Europe ?
Sweden, Croatia, Finland, Bulgaria, Latvia and Austria topped the list of renewable energy performers in the EU.
Here are the main sources of renewable energy for each country :
Sweden - hydro, biomass. Exports a lot of electricity to Finland.
Croatia - hydro with some wind and solar. Imports a lot of electricity.
Bulgaria - hydro and solar.
Finland - biomass and hydro. Imports a lot of electricity from Sweden and Russia.
Latvia - biomass and hydro.
Austria - biomass and hydro.
And for countries outside the EU - -
Iceland - geothermal.
Norway - hydro. Norway has 65 times as much hydro as wind.
This clearly shows that the most successful renewables are Hydro and bioenergy/biomass. There are also significant benefits to interconnection especially if the neighbouring country has a lot of hydro. For instance, Denmark has a similar amount of wind energy to Ireland, but relies heavily on imports from hydro based electricity in Norway and Sweden which means wind has to do a lot less heavy lifting than in Ireland (because imported electricity is emission free). Denmark ranks in the top 10 of the EU renewable energy targets table for this reason.
It looks like Ireland backed the wrong horse with wind energy. However, based on past performance, it is unlikely that Ireland will put the brakes on and assess the situation.