We published the Shaping Our Electricity Future Roadmap Version 1.0 in November 2021. Version 1.0 reflected the climate change policies of Northern Ireland and Ireland at that time, since then things have changed. We have prepared an update to the Roadmap — Shaping Our Electricity Future Version 1.1.
The grid requires unprecedented change in the lead up to 2030. The main objective of this Roadmap is to outline how we can make the grid ready so that 80% of Northern Ireland’s and Ireland's electricity can come from renewable sources, like the wind and sun, by 2030. These targets, and new limits to carbon emissions, are the product of updates to climate change policies in 2022.
To achieve these targets by 2030, more energy from renewable sources needs to be connected to the power system. This means that the electricity grid will need to carry more power from energy sources that vary depending on the weather. This power will also need to be carried over longer distances. As a result, we need to make the grid stronger and more flexible. This Roadmap outlines the changes needed to do that.
To inform this updated Roadmap we engaged with stakeholder groups through a call for inputs from the energy industry and academia in July 2022. This ran for a period of six weeks, and we received 29 responses across Northern Ireland and Ireland.
While this Roadmap is based on what we can do, it also considers how others in the electricity ecosystem can help achieve these targets by 2030.
During 2021 we conducted a comprehensive public consultation, engaging through traditional and innovative methods to make sure all voices were heard. We have now published the findings of this work which maps out our plans to help meet Northern Ireland's renewable targets.
The four approaches in Shaping Our Electricity Future Version 1.0 comprised the following:
Between Monday 8 March and Monday 14 June, SONI held a series of online workshops, meetings and fora across the country to inform people and gather feedback that will directly influence the final roadmap.
In addition to this, SONI launched a new consultation portal at consult.soni.ltd.uk that hosted the consultation material and acted as an accessible platform for people to submit their views.
SONI and Eirgrid established the Shaping Our Electricity Future Advisory Council after assessing potential options for facilitating ongoing industry engagement on the issues, challenges and activities set out in the Shaping Our Electricity Future Roadmap.
Click here to view the Open Letter: Establishment of Shaping Our Electricity Future Advisory Council.