Morning, Wednesday, 18th November 2020
THIS EVENT IS CPD CERTIFIED
***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***
This conference will examine the future for energy policy in Northern Ireland - and implications for the energy sector, its partners and customers.
We also discussion to reflect the impact on key stakeholders of the COVID-19 crisis, lessons that can be learned for the future, and extra support that might be needed going forward.
Key areas for discussion:
- The newly formed Executive’s priorities for energy policy in Northern Ireland, with the Strategic Energy Framework white paper expected to be published in the second half of this year;
- The role of the energy sector in meeting carbon emission goals - in the context of the anticipated Climate Change Bill proposed in the New Decade, New Approach agreement - including:
- the position of conventional energy in a low carbon economy,
- priorities for further promoting renewable energy - including funding, and provision of incentives for the renewable electricity industry and supply chains, and
- the role of decarbonising the heat sector - in light of the majority of homes in Northern Ireland heated by oil and the previous unsuccessful renewable heat programme.
- The future energy market in Northern Ireland, including the potential impact of Brexit on the market and on the progress of I-SEM - Ireland’s integrated single energy market;
- Infrastructure priorities for Norther Ireland’s energy transition - including:
- investment in grid capacity to allow for the development of further renewable energy production,
- support greater grid flexibility and smart system upgrades, and
- electrification of private transport, including requirements for a shift to greater number of electric vehicles and build the capacity for electrification of other sectors.
- Energy security - in the context of UK negotiations with the EU over their future relationship - including priorities for:
- increasing diversity of energy sources,
- decreasing reliance on imported fuels, and
- ensuring energy connections with the rest of the UK and the Republic of Ireland, including the second north/south interconnector following the return of the Executive.
- Managing the impact of transition on the energy sector, business customers, and consumers:
- maintaining low cost for domestic consumers and reducing the high rate of fuel poverty,
- promoting business competitiveness in Northern Ireland by reducing the high costs for large energy users, and
- use of data to reduce cost and use of energy.
Developments that are relevant to the discussion:
It takes place with:
- The drafting of a new Strategic Energy Framework by the Department for Economy - NI’s long term strategy which will run from 2021-2050 - which is expected to cover:
- enhancing sustainability and delivering on climate change law by 2050;
- building competitive markets for consumers and businesses;
- developing energy infrastructure; and
- future regulation and governance.
- The declaration of a climate emergency in Stormont;
- A Climate Change Bill expected to be introduced in the coming year;
- Concerns from the Committee on Climate Change in their Reducing emissions in Northern Ireland report that:
- the region needs to play catch up to meet the UK’s 2050 Net Zero obligations,
- on the current trajectory, NI would fall short of the 2030 level recommended by the committee.
- UK negotiations with the EU over their future relationship - with delegates expected to assess the priorities for energy security in Northern Ireland;
- Delays in planning permission for the second north/south interconnector in Northern Ireland due to the absence of the Executive; and
- Recommendations for Northern Ireland from the Committee’s advice on the UK’s Sixth Carbon Budget due to be published in September.
- Energy Policy in Northern Ireland - key priorities for the energy strategy;
- The role of the energy sector in meeting the 2050 net zero targets;
- Next steps for the development of the grid and interconnectors;
- Ensuring security of supply and effective infrastructure to meet future energy needs;
- Challenges for the market in the energy transition; and
- Balancing priorities - costs, competition and fuel poverty.
Policy officials attending:
Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders.
It’s certainly the case with this one. Places have been reserved by officials from the Department for Economy; the Department for Education; the Department for the Economy; the Department of Communications, Climate Action & Environment; and the Northern Ireland Environment Agency.
This is a full-scale conference taking place online***
- full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording to refer back to
- information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
- conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
- speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
- opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
- a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
- delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
- networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!
Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference