Published: Fri, 01 April 2016
“Cork’s latest research into renewable energy and particularly wave energy technology makes it the clear European leader in that sector”, Ireland South MEP Seán Kelly told EU policymakers attending a special briefing by Marine Renewable Energy Ireland (MaREI) in Cork today (Thursday).
Today’s meetings at University College Cork concluded a two-day fact-finding mission by MEP Kelly and a delegation of visiting MEPs belonging to the European Parliament’s Committee on Industry, Research and Energy.
“The Marine Renewable Energy Ireland (MaREI) has a new deep water basin facility which is capable of generating wave heights of up to 1.1m, ensuring Ireland is at the forefront in testing wave energy devices.
“MaREI is also home to Ireland’s National Ocean Test Facility LIR-NOTF – this enables scientists and researchers to test new equipment and other marine structures in different wave conditions – it is a really remarkable resource,” Mr Kelly said.
The MEPs, who are currently reviewing progress of renewable energy development at EU level, today heard how Ireland is being promoted as the premier global research and development location for marine and energy research. The Irish Maritime and Energy Resource Cluster based out of UCC, CIT and with the Irish Naval Service are leading this work.
Representatives from Shannon LNG and Shannon Foynes Port also met with the policymakers this morning – crucial meetings according to MEP Kelly: “The Shannon LNG project in Kerry was cited by the European Commission as a future strategic hub for Europe’s gas supply in recent months. That means it is now eligible for low cost financing from the European Investment Bank (EIB). The Commission is focused on supporting gas hubs such as this one which, when combined with a fully interconnected and well-functioning European market, can increase supply security across the Union and allow Shannon to become a key gas import point for the EU.
“My fellow MEPs and I will be reviewing the Commission’s forthcoming strategy for the LNG or Liquefied nitrogen gas supply in Europe this autumn so today’s meeting is timely and of huge interest to the delegation who will be key decision-makers in shaping future EU policy.
“I have often highlighted the potential of the Shannon LNG project which could boost Europe’s gas supply at a time when we urgently need to secure our energy supplies,” Mr Kelly said.
The LNG project at Ballylongford could provide 650 jobs during construction with 50 permanent jobs afterwards.