March 2 (Renewables Now) - Wind power had a share of 32.5% in Ireland’s electricity demand in 2019, compared to 29% achieved in the previous year, according to the annual report issued by the Irish Wind Energy Association (IWEA).
It was a record share for the country, the second highest in Europe and the highest for onshore wind, IWEA said.
Ireland’s wind generated a total of 9.497 TWh of power throughout the year, while in February and December, it succeeded in providing more electricity than natural gas-based plants.
IWEA said that 24 new wind farms were connected in 2019, bringing 463 MW of combined installed capacity, which made 2019 the second-best year on record for new connections.
The total installed wind capacity in Ireland reached 4,130 MW at the end of 2019, with IWEA highlighting the country's potential for more in both onshore and offshore segments.
However, the industry’s biggest concern lies with the practice known as dispatch down, which occurs when a wind farm is instructed to slow down production or shut down completely. This happens either as a result of curtailment or due to the transmission system in some part of the country not being strong enough to transport all of the wind-generated power, IWEA explains.
Last year, 1,008 TWh of power produced by wind was lost due to dispatch down. This amount of output represents 7.7% of the total production, or what could have been enough to power up more than 200,000 homes.