Republic among most energy-vulnerable nations, study finds

New survey shows State tops global efficiency league but struggles in other key areas

The Republic ranks among the countries most vulnerable to energy shocks, such as shortages, despite leading the globe for energy efficiency, according to a new study.

Euromonitor International’s first global energy vulnerability index shows that the State leads the 99 other countries surveyed for energy efficiency.

However, poor performances in critical areas leave it ranked 70 out of 100 overall, making it the third worst of all EU members on the index, ahead of Poland on 78 and Lithuania on 90.

The rankings show the Republic is one of the lowest-rated participants in terms of self-sufficiency, where it ranks 94th as the State imports much of its energy, mostly in the form of natural gas, oil and coal.


The State rates 61st for alternatives to fossil fuels, leaving it trailing many other European nations, including the UK, and high-scorers Norway and Sweden, all of which invest heavily in green energy.

Economic resilience was the other one of the five headings – not all of which carry equal weighting – under which the Republic performed well, ranking at number 15, while it came in at 29th for accessibility, which measures infrastructure and reliability.

Norway, which exports both fossil fuels and renewable electricity, ranks number one overall. It leads the world in self-sufficiency, a key heading, and accessibility. The Scandinavian country is one of the sources for Irish natural gas imports, particularly in winter.

Most of the high-scoring countries, including Canada, the US, Australia and Angola, ranked high on self-sufficiency. Many in this group also performed well under the fossil fuel alternatives heading, even though many of them have significant reserves of such fuels.

Self-sufficiency at 30 per cent, and alternatives to fossil fuel, at 35 per cent, carried the highest weighting in the index.

Aleksandra Svidler, Euromonitor consultant, noted that countries that relied heavily on imports, with low adoption of renewables, weak efficiency and which were economically unstable, were most vulnerable to energy risks.

“Although many European countries are better positioned to weather disruptions due to the rising renewables adoption and better access to capital, the region’s high reliance on energy imports raises its exposure to energy shocks,” she argued.

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O’Halloran covers energy, construction, insolvency, and gaming and betting, among other areas