The Electricity Regulation Commission warned that the risk to the security of electricity supply in Ireland was “acute” amid fears of significant outages and collateral damage to government policy on climate change.
The most recent risk register for the Utilities Regulation Commission (CRU) gave supply disruptions a five out of five for impact and a four out of five for likelihood of occurrence.
This created a 20 out of 25 risk that electricity demand would not be met by 2025.
It warned of the potential for “loss of load expectation, expectation higher than target and/or significant events occurring during the period such as: B. Significant failures”.
The risk register added: “It has the potential to hurt public sentiment for the climate action plan and the transition to a low-carbon future.”
The CRU also warned that insufficient resources are hampering its ability to meet its goals, compounded by demands to expedite work on climate targets and address supply issues.
There is a risk of delays in important work, as well as the possibility of “burnout of existing staff and potential retention problems”.
It also said recruiting new staff required significant effort and expense, but job vacancies at the regulator had fallen to six, with two vacancies currently open.
The CRU also said some resources have been allocated to priority areas, including security of supply.
The raw risk from insufficient resources was rated 25 out of 25 according to the register published under Freedom of Information (FOI).
Concerns have also been raised about the scheme, which aims to ensure electricity demand is always met over the next three years. This risk was rated 15 out of 25 points.
A project management office has been established between CRU, Eirgrid and the Department of Environment to address the energy supply crisis.
“This (office) coordinates regular update reports on the program, including current risks and issues and the status of the actions/measures,” the registry said.
Concerns have also been raised about the CRU’s systems for managing records, with the risk of “loss, mismanagement or misuse” of data.
A new record retention policy is needed to ensure compliance with laws such as FOI and to address “inefficiencies due to records or data not being retrievable.”
The CRU also raised the possibility that Brexit would complicate procurement from the supply regulator in Northern Ireland.
The Risk Register said: “As the UK is outside the EU, the
The EU exit procurement agreement will have legal implications for our ability to jointly issue contract notices for services.”
This harbors the risk of inadvertently violating public procurement law, with the possibility of asserting claims from third parties for violations.
However, a CRU spokesman said those issues surrounding the joint procurement have now been addressed and finalized.
A statement from CRU said: “CRU operates a systematic risk management process to proactively identify, assess and mitigate risks to meet requirements including ensuring energy and water security, addressing climate change and protecting the environment interests of the customers.”
https://www.independent.ie/news/environment/energy-regulator-warns-of-acute-risk-to-security-of-power-supply-here-41864247.html The energy regulator warns of an “acute” threat to the security of the electricity supply