The Environment Ministry has announced that joint “emergency training” for gas and electricity will take place this month, in line with what it calls “prudent and ongoing” emergency planning.
The exercises will take place on September 9th and 16th to test a coordinated multi-stakeholder response to a “hypothetical and unlikely disruption” to Ireland’s gas and/or electricity supply.
In a statement released this afternoon, a spokesman for the department said emergency training exercises have been conducted as part of “regular and routine emergency preparedness” for many years.
“The exercises are part of regularly tested and established emergency plans.
“The conduct of such exercises is in line with EU legislation on the security of energy supply and also forms an essential part of Ireland’s preparedness for possible disruptions to gas or electricity supplies, however unlikely or remote the possibility of such disruptions may be,” the spokesman said .
“During these exercises, different hypothetical scenarios are considered and the reactions are subjected to a stress test.
“These emergency exercises will continue to involve key players in the energy sector including Gas Networks Ireland, EirGrid, ESB Networks and the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU).
“This year, bodies from the gas and electricity sectors will take part in a joint exercise – reflecting a broadening of the scenarios considered.”
The spokesperson added that Gas Networks Ireland and EirGrid have “robust procedures” in place to maintain security of gas and electricity supplies and “participate regularly in simulation exercises to test a range of potential scenarios”.
The added statement, while a “significant disruption to energy supplies is unlikely,” such an event could impact multiple sectors.
“Gas Networks Ireland is the leading body for gas related exercises; EirGrid is the leading body for electricity-related exercises.
“CRU is overseeing overall contingency plans and working with the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications,” the spokesman said.
“The role these bodies play is critical in ensuring a coordinated response to major incidents should they occur infrequently.
“While a significant disruption in energy supplies is unlikely, such an event has the potential to impact multiple sectors and therefore the established Strategic Emergency Management (SEM) frameworks to deal with a major emergency would ensure a ‘whole’ of government response if such circumstances arise.
“In such circumstances, the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications would become the lead government department and convene and lead the National Emergency Coordination Group (NECG) at the National Energy Coordination Center (NECC) – to coordinate the government’s response to the energy emergency.”
https://www.independent.ie/news/gas-and-electricity-emergency-training-to-take-place-this-month-in-line-with-prudent-contingency-planning-41968976.html Emergency training for gas and electricity is to take place this month in line with ‘prudent’ emergency planning