€150m Energy Storage project in Midlands, with over 120 jobs in construction phase
Published: 4th September 2019
South Korean energy company, Hanwha Energy Corporation and their Irish partners, Offaly based Lumcloon Energy Limited, today announced commencement of two new 100MW Energy Storage plants in the Midlands, which are designed to support renewable energy.
The Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment Richard Bruton TD welcomed today’s announcement by Hanwha Energy Corporation as a key investment in the Midlands economy, and said that the company’s decision will contribute towards the 70% renewable electricity target contained in the Climate Action Plan.
The event is being attended Mr Richard Bruton, TD, Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Mr Woon-ki Lyeo, Ambassador of South Korea to Ireland, Mr Mark Foley, CEO, Eirgrid and Mr Du Hyoung Ryoo, CEO, Hanwha Energy Corporation, Korea.
Based in Lumcloon and Shannonbridge in west Offaly, the plants will involve a combined investment of €150 million and provide more than 120 jobs at construction phase, which will be completed in early 2021.
On completion, it will be the largest facility of its type in the EU.
Development work is due to commence immediately, initially focusing on the Lumcloon facility.
The new facilities, based on state-of-the-art battery storage technology which has been deployed across the globe, is a very efficient resource for grid stability and reliability. The facility is a backup source of power and will be capable of being called upon almost instantly to provide system services. System services are necessary to bolster a renewables based electricity grid.
The two facilities are unobtrusive, almost silent in operation and not a power plant in the conventional sense.
Welcoming the announcement today Minister Richard Bruton said; “This will be a great project for the Midlands and in particular West Offaly. Ireland has huge potential for renewable energy. Currently only 30% of our electricity is from renewable sources but under my Climate Action Plan this will increase to 70% by 2030. This Energy Storage Project is an example of how we can achieve this target. Today’s announcement is part of the transition from an electricity sector dominated by fossil fuels to one powered by renewable energy.
Mr Du Hyoung Ryoo, of Hanwha Energy Corporation, said this new would be a significant cornerstone to contribute to the energy business in Ireland and represents a strong commitment by Hanwha to both Ireland and the EU
“Hanwha is very enthusiastic about the potential to support the pioneering work of Eirgrid in developing an efficient energy network in Ireland. We are delighted to be afforded the opportunity to develop Battery Energy Storage Solutions (BESS), services in Ireland enhancing the stability and reliability of power system for the entire country.”
Mr Tom Kelly, Divisional Manager, Innovation & Competitiveness, Enterprise Ireland said: "This new partnership makes Offaly-based Lumcloon Energy a real player in the smart energy market as renewable energy continues to significantly grow its role in electricity generation. Enterprise Ireland has provided a number of innovation supports for the company and our Asia Pacific team in particular has helped to support the global ambition of the team over the last number of years. Lumcloon Energy provides a great example of innovation emerging from the regions and we look forward to continuing to work with the company as it builds scale, expands reach and brings its innovative technology to overseas markets."
Mr Nigel Reams, CEO of Lumcloon Energy, said the project will provide clean and cost effective services to the national grid, backed by a company that is a world leader in renewable energy. “The project will help the state to greatly mitigate hefty emissions fines threatened by the EU related to Ireland’s failure to fully meet 2020 targets and will benefit consumers and business alike. “We have worked very closely with, and are appreciate of the support of Eirgrid, in developing a project that is a streamlined and fully meets the requirements for energy back up and supports,” he said. “The project greatly reduces energy supply risks from the wide variability of wind power as we increase our reliance and dependency on renewables, which reached 65% mainly wind-based renewable energy with an aim of 75% levels in the near future. “Our electricity traditionally came from highly pollutant sources, like coal, peat, gas and oil, which is no longer sustainable. The new plants at Lumcloon and Shannonbridge will help make Offaly and Ireland a world leader and pioneer in renewable energy,” Nigel Reams said.
About Battery Energy Storage Solutions (BESS):
This development will introduce Battery Energy Storage Solutions (BESS) to Ireland for the first time on a commercial basis. It is aimed specifically at supporting Ireland’s 2020 renewable targets by enabling greater levels of wind and solar to be accommodated on the Grid.
Applying this knowledge to Ireland, BESS will assist with:
• Facilitation of indigenous renewable power generation and lower curtailment
• Reduction in the production cost of electricity, cutting costs to consumers
• Enhancement of power system stability and reliability by providing system services efficiently
• Improvement of the operational efficiency and emissions intensity of power generation.