Winds of change on jobs front
Madam -- I wish to respond to a number of inaccuracies in Fiona O'Connell's piece on wind farms (Sunday Independent, September 30, 2012).
There is no evidence to suggest that any Irish jobs will be lost because of the development of wind farms. Currently, the onshore wind energy sector employs more than 2,000 people in Ireland. This week the Irish Wind Energy Association launches an export policy paper which states that as many as 30,000 jobs could be created in the Irish wind energy sector with the correct investment. Wind farm developments also boost local economies as seen with existing developments.
Likewise, it is important to clarify that at present there is no need for wind farms to be backed up by additional energy technologies. The UK will be facing security of supply issues, so it is unlikely there will be a problem with oversupply in Ireland.
Finally, the planning processes for these developments occurs in an open and transparent manner.
Wind energy has remained remarkably successful through the economic downturn and has continued to see increasing levels of investment in the domestic economy. Ireland is uniquely positioned to take advantage of the investment and jobs that are on offer from green energy but inaccurate statements will only hamper efforts to unlock Ireland's undoubted potential.
CEO, Irish Wind Energy Association,
Naas, Co Kildare