“It’s now or never, if we want to limit global warming to 1.5C,” These are the stark words of Prof Jim Skea, Co-Chair of ‘IPCC Working Group III’ which recently launched its report assessing climate change mitigation progress globally.

This sentiment is not lost on Large energy users (“LEUs”) in Ireland in 2022. Never more so than in recent months have we at Flogas Enterprise been having more serious and determined conversations with corporate LEUs about decarbonising energy supply in a sustainable and impactful way.

The most beneficial way to decarbonise energy supply is through on-site or direct-wire (i.e. renewable generation supplying power directly to your site by wire) energy supply.  Irish regulation needs to play catch up in the area of direct-wire electricity supply, meaning for now the only direct supply option is on-site generation. This is a sustainable and impactful approach, but in most cases is limited for LEUs by roof space, site size and/or availability/appetite for capex investment.

With on-site or direct wire options limited, then the most meaningful option to decarbonise power and gas supply in Ireland in 2022 is therefore by contracting with a production facility of renewable electricity or biomethane. This means contracting with a facility, somewhere on the electricity or gas network, to supply your business with energy through the network, usually in the form of a long-term supply contract – with the contract “sleeved” through the energy supplier such as Flogas Enterprise

In today’s volatile energy market, the benefits of securing a locally supplied, long-term, fixed price energy hedge are stronger than ever. Other benefits also include budgeting i.e. knowing your energy costs have been secured ahead of time; the decarbonisation associated with the contract in the form of traceable certification of the energy; supporting Ireland’s renewable ambitions; and often supporting communities local to the renewable development as part of the arrangement. It is also reassuring to see the recent policy developments by government which should, in time, create a nurturing environment for the corporate renewable energy contracting market in Ireland.

We at Flogas Enterprise have been buying and supplying renewable power for over a decade in Ireland and more recently we have been doing the same for biogas/biomethane. However, now is the time of LEUs to step up and take ownership of the carbon impact of their energy supply and address it through corporate offtake agreements (known as “Corporate Power Purchase Agreements” (CPPAs) for electricity and “Corporate Biogas/Biomethane Purchase Agreements” (CBPAs) for biogas or biomethane).  Flogas Enterprise are strategically focussed on bringing corporate LEUs to the renewable market as qualified, educated and committed CPPA and CBPA counterparties, to unlock the potential of the Irish renewables pipeline. Using our expertise, experience, and established relationships in the renewables market, we can provide real options to decarbonise the energy supply of LEUs and access to the Irish renewable development pipeline.

We are excited to bring Irish LEUs to the Irish renewable market, who are seeking to secure Corporate Power Purchase Agreements (CPPAs) and Corporate Biomethane Power Agreements (CBPAs) – and we don’t just mean data centres! The motivation has never been greater than it is today from LEUs, which is necessary but also timely considering the recent IPCC report mentioned above.

The CPPA and CBPA markets are well-established in other countries, such as the US, with LEUs already demonstrating the benefits. However, these markets are in their infancy in Ireland. We are ready for the LEU trailblazers to make their mark and we are here to support them. It has never been more important for LEUs to consider CPPAs and CBPAs than it is today, for an ever-increasing number of reasons. As time goes on, these options will surely become the norm for LEUs in the Irish market – but today, urgency and intent are required from LEUs to make a sustainable impact on decarbonising energy supply.

It’s now or never.