Many analysts predict that rising oil prices will effect Ireland’s prospects of recovery with the tipping point at $115 per barrel. Currently, Brent Crude is trading at $120 and this key marker has been rising steadily since 2002. As a comparison, back in 2002 Brent Crude was trading at $20 per barrel. Unfortunately, with increasing instability in the Middle East plus declining North Sea production, the outlook is getting worse.
For industry in Ireland what can be done? Converting from oil to gas will reduce costs, but since gas prices follow oil with a lag of around 6 months, any saving will be small. Converting from oil or gas to electricity is also not a solution as 60% of electricity is generated by gas and thus will also increase in price.
The real answer for individual companies is to improve energy efficiency and seek renewable energy options. For the country in general, the opportunities presented by fracking should be fully exploited as this has the ability to tap large gas reserves.
There is help available for companies who wish to improve matters, including grant aid from Enterprise Ireland. Environmental Efficiency has a long track record of working with eligible companies and we can point you in the right direction to enable you to receive the support that you need.