• Ireland announces provisional auction results for its first renewable energy auction under RESS scheme
  • Solar PV secured 796 MW, and onshore wind 479 MW with an average weighted bid price of €74.08 per MWh
  • The weighted average bid price for solar was €72.92 per MWh while the ceiling tariff was €120.00 per MWh
  • Final auction results will be announced post government approval, said DCCAE head Eamon Ryan

Ireland has published the provisional results of the country’s first renewable energy auction under the new Renewable Electricity Support Scheme (RESS). It shows solar may be winning 796.3 MW capacity against onshore wind’s share of 479.2 MW. Final results will be announced after government approval.

Of the total bids submitted adding up to 2,557 GWh, the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment (DCCAE) said 2,237 GWh capacity was selected with an average weighted bid price at €74.08 ($87.53) per MWh, as against €120.00 per MWh as the ceiling tariff. Solar was very competitive, it stated.

The Irish Wind Energy Association (IWEA) provided a link to provisional auction results on EirGrid’s website, which shows 82 projects were selected of which 63 were solar PV and 19 onshore wind projects. The weighted average bid price for solar was €72.92 ($86.16) per MWh.

Apparently, DCCAE assumed that wind would be more competitive than solar, offering solar PV a 10% auction share in the solar preference category. The technology accounted for approximately 34% of the overall auction energy volume.

There was also a community led projects category that accounted for close to 1.5% of the overall successful auction volume with 7 projects identified as provisional winners. This allows communities to build their own renewable energy projects and sell the energy generated back to the grid.

The country’s Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Eamon Ryan, while announcing the provisional results, said, “While these results remain subject to Government approval, the first RESS auction provides us with a platform for rapid deployment of onshore wind and solar projects at scale and at least cost, replacing fossil fuels on our energy grid.” He added, “We have exceeded our target for Community projects participation with seven communities being supported to produce their own power and share in the ownership of Ireland’s energy revolution while inspiring others to follow. I would expect that our next auction will have a higher share of community based renewables.”

Under the RESS, Ireland will be holding a minimum of 4 auctions between 2020 and 2025 in order to meet its renewable electricity target of 70% by 2030. The current auction round constitutes RESS 1 (see EU Approves Ireland’s Renewable Electricity Scheme).