WEI Annual Conference 2024 Report

It seems only appropriate that our best attended conference follows our industry’s best year for producing electricity.


In 2023 our members saved the equivalent annual emissions of 1.9 million cars and took a billion euro out of the pockets of the fossil fuel industry. And we’re not done yet.


Over two days nearly 750 policymakers and industry leaders discussed how we can accelerate the development of renewable energy.


We debated policy roadblocks and explored possible solutions, we had thought-provoking conversations and we forged valuable new relationships that will help to propel our industry forward.


In the face of a global climate crisis, the urgency of our mission has never been more apparent. Wind energy is Ireland’s climate leader, offering a pathway to a greener, energy-independent, Ireland, and one that it was clear has full political support.


Annual Conference 2024 opened with Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald TD telling delegates “the Irish wind energy industry has demonstrated time and again that it is at the forefront of Ireland’s energy revolution, of driving ambitious, positive change” and committing to work in partnership with us in the years to come.


The next day Minister for Finance Michael McGrath TD welcomed the progress we have made towards our ambitious targets in the Climate Action Plan and reaffirmed the commitment of this Government to do more, to reform the planning system, to develop our electricity grid and to invest in critical State agencies.


The need for more, for more speed, for more urgency was highlighted by Statkraft’s Kevin O’Donovan who told a packed conference hall that the planning system needed to be approving 1 GW of projects every year to reach our targets. He highlighted that companies like Statkraft have thriving renewable energy pipelines which are ready to respond if the right policies are put in place.


And the benefits of that renewable energy go beyond decarbonisation as SSE Renewables’ Maria Ryan described the thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of euro in investment that could transform coastal communities from offshore wind projects. Building on the success of our onshore industry we need, she told the audience, “the main thing is to keep the main thing, the main thing, and the main thing is delivery”.

We are delighted to share with you the daily coverage from the conference by our media partners reNews

Day 1 Coverage – click here

Day 2 Coverage – click here