Who owns Irish wind?

Some work in progress from my bigger research project.

Simple question, who owns Irish wind?* EU28 states each have their 2020 renewables targets, but somewhere down the line each nation’s big number gets contextualised into an industry with firms, policies and instruments. Here’s a look at the changing concentration of firm ownership in the Irish wind industry as its developed taking snap shots at the end of 1999, 2004, 2009 and 2013.

The growth of Irish wind since 1999

The industry started small and independent, then got bigger and more utility. That’s impressive growth. But who gains, and how will we know when we’ve reached enough? Who’s financing this and who shares the gains?

There is roughly 3,000MW of built up capacity due to be delivered in the current round of connections (Gate 3), and anywhere between 10 and 20GW queuing up behind that according to different sources, these pies are going to rise some more before the heat is turned down.

Here’s the missing detail on the first two graphs:

Irish wind generating firms at the end of 1999

Irish wind generating firms at the end of 2004

*The even simpler question of course is how come the radio spectrum was sold off to Vodafone, O2 etc. and the wind farmers get to farm the wind for free. That’s another day’s work.