Published on 

Citizens, farmers, business owners and community organisations will be able to sell electricity into the grid under new scheme being developed by Climate Minister

Individuals, farmers, businesses and community groups will be able to sell renewable electricity into the grid under a scheme being developed by the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamon Ryan TD. A new Microgeneration Support Scheme (MSS) is being designed to provide a route to market for citizens and communities. This will allow them to generate their own renewable electricity, e.g. from solar panels on their roofs, and receive a fair price when they sell the excess into the grid.

The Scheme design also seeks to establish the ‘renewables self-consumer’ model of energy generation and consumption in Ireland; to support community and citizen participation in the transition to a net-zero carbon economy; and to contribute to achieving our 2030 targets for renewable energy.

Speaking today (Thursday 14 January), Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamonn Ryan TD said: “This scheme will allow people and communities to become active participants in the energy transition. By producing and selling their own electricity citizens, farmers, business owners and community organisations can save on their energy costs and reduce their carbon footprint. I urge interested parties to get involved and have their say.”

Micro-generators will primarily serve their own consumption needs but will be able to receive a payment for excess electricity exported back to the grid. The Scheme will ensure that there is equity in what supports are offered and how the cost of support is distributed. As part of the design, micro-generators must have first met minimum energy efficiency requirements for their properties.

Minister Ryan is inviting the public to take part in a consultation on how the scheme will operate. The consultation is part of a broader movement towards greater citizen involvement in energy policy, committed to in the 2020 Programme for Government.

Click here for Public Consultation on a Micro-generation Support Scheme (MSS) in Ireland

Click here for Economic and policy advice to support the design and implementation of the new microgeneration support scheme in Ireland

Notes to the Editor

This framework also forms part of the emerging Solar Strategy commitment in the 2020 Programme for Government and contributes towards our delivery of the EU Clean Energy Package.

In framing a new support scheme for micro-generation, the Government is mindful of the overarching objective to ensure any support scheme is equitable and addresses cost burden sharing. The scheme takes account of the need to protect customers, in particular vulnerable customers; and to be accessible to all electricity customers. The principle of an energy efficiency first approach to building retrofit is included. Those considering availing of support for the installation of micro-generation will need to meet minimum Building Energy Ratings (BER) for their properties and may need to carry out retrofit activities on the property.

There is also a responsibility on industry to play its part in bringing to market technology options that will minimise and control costs for households and businesses alike.

Following consideration of submissions to this consultation, a final design will be submitted for Government approval, with implementation targeted for July 2021.

This public consultation will remain open until 17.30hrs on 18th February 2021.  All responses should be submitted to or in writing to MSS Consultation, Electricity Policy Division, Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications, 29-31 Adelaide Road, Dublin 2, Ireland. D02X285.

Please note that all submissions and comments submitted to DECC for the purpose of this consultation may be subject to release under the Freedom of Information Act 1997-2003 and will be published on the Department’s website. Any information which is commercially sensitive should be clearly indicated in the submission.