Less talk and more action needed to address energy crisis
22 August 2022
Labour Party leader Ivana Bacik has today (Monday 22nd August) said that less talk and more action is needed to avoid blackouts this winter and to secure Ireland’s energy supply into the future.
Deputy Bacik said:
“While the commissioning of yet another Government review is to be broadly welcomed, we believe that it comes as too little and too late. Government ministers cannot simply bury their head in the sand and remain bystanders in this. They need to take swift and immediate action to protect people and businesses across the country over the short, medium and long term.
"The Government had the capacity to put in place, long before now, the significant investment necessary to ensure that we would have not only an early warning system but that we would put in place real measures to ensure energy security into the future. To date, they have failed to do so and households, individuals and families will now be expected to pay for this failure.
“As a first step towards securing the future of Ireland’s energy supply, we should see an immediate pause on all new data centre connections to the grid and the fast-tracking of necessary major investment in the grid.
“The Government should also introduce an immediate windfall tax on energy companies profits to cushion the blow this winter - we will outline how this should be done in our alternative Budget in the coming weeks.
“The reality is that we are in this precarious position due to a lack of long-term energy planning. We must use this crisis as an opportunity to transition away from our current energy policy where we rely on 80% of "dirty" imported fossil fuels. This isn't just about climate change - but also energy security. After the oil crisis in the 1970s, Denmark - a similar sized social democratic country - took the strategic decision to invest in co-operative wind farms and is now a leading world power when it comes to wind energy. Ireland has the same potential - we can become a superpower of wind energy - but the strategic vision has been lacking from this Government. This needs to change. We need to hear less talk and see more action.”