Demand for energy in province 'to remain stable'
Demand for energy in Northern Ireland is expected to remain stable over the next nine years, according to grid operator EirGrid.
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But EirGrid, which also owns SONI, the grid operator in Northern Ireland SONI, warned that demand in the Republic would rise by 57% in less than a decade as more data centres come on stream.
The Irish grid operator has warned that new power plants or renewable energy projects will have to be in place no later than 2026, or there will not be sufficient generation in place to meet national demand.
It said while demand in Northern Ireland is expected to remain stable out to 2027, it is forecast to "significantly" increase in the Republic due to the expected expansion of large energy users, which are primarily data centres operated by tech giants including Facebook, Google and Amazon.
Under a medium-demand scenario, by 2027 data centres could account for 31% of all electricity demand. EirGrid said under a low-growth scenario, new generation capacity will be needed by 2026.