Solar energy and climate targets

 

Sir, – The lack of joined-up thinking on meeting Ireland’s carbon emissions targets is captured perfectly in John FitzGerald’s analysis (Business Opinion, June 15th) of the recent Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) report.

An immediate refocus of policy is urgently required that harnesses the potential of roof-top photovoltaic (PV) solar as the technology that can make a real difference to carbon emissions quickly. Homeowners, business and farmers are ready and willing to play a proactive role in adopting solar PV and micro-generation.

The Government should redirect 20 per cent of the existing public service obligation (PSO) levy charged to energy consumers and support those very same consumers to generate some of their own electricity requirements from rooftop or ground-mounted solar PV.

There is enough roof space to build out approximately 5,000 mw (megawatts) of solar PV, and with Government funding support of €100 million per year (equivalent to the current subsidy for inefficient peat-burning electricity generation), we would underpin the deployment of around 250 mw of electricity per year. That would displace well over a million tonnes of carbon per year. We could then say that we are serious about meeting our carbon emission targets. – Yours, etc,

PAT SMITH,

Micro-Renewable

Energy Federation,

The Capel Building,

Mary’s Abbey,

Dublin 7.