Shannon Foynes Port, Ireland’s second largest port operator and largest bulk port company, has statutory jurisdiction over all marine activities on a 500km2 area on the Shannon Estuary, stretching from Kerry to Loop Head to Limerick City.
Adjacent to the world’s busiest shipping routes, with current capacity to handle over 10 million tonnes annually and with water depths of up to 32m, we are uniquely positioned to expand as an international cargo hub serving the domestic, European and worldwide markets. This expansion will be accommodated by up to 1200 hectares of land available for Port development.
News & Events
28 September 2022Renewable energy opportunity off Shannon Estuary at European scale - German Ambassador & Dutch Ambassador Monday 26 September 2022: The renewable energy generation potential of the Shannon Estuary is beyond a domestic opportunity and very much at European scale, the Dutch and German Ambassadors to Ireland have concluded during a visit to Foynes. Dutch Ambassador to Ireland Adriaan Palm and German Ambassador to Ireland Cord Meier-Klodt visited the largest port and key enabler of the estuary’s planned transformation into a global renewable energy hub over the coming decades. The visit was at the invitation of Shannon Foynes Port Company, which has statutory jurisdiction over all marine activities on the 500km2 Estuary. The estuary is earmarked as the supply-chain hub for realising Ireland’s enormous offshore wind opportunity off the west coast. That wind resource is estimated to be capable of generating up to 80GW of electricity – ten times our national requirement – for a mix of grid supply, storage, export or producing green hydrogen. Both Germany and The Netherlands have ambitious wind energy and green fuels generation plans and believe that the Shannon Estuary and Ireland is also on a path to contributing significantly to Europe’s energy mix in the decades ahead, such is the scale of the opportunity here. Said Ambassador Palm: “Our nations are on a common journey today. The Netherlands, Ireland and, indeed, the EU through the REPowerEU programme, see wind and green fuels as key components in the mix for tackling climate change and energy security. I’m delighted to have been able to come to Foynes to witness first-hand the potential here and it is enormous. It is at a scale that will impact way beyond domestic requirements but, I believe, can make a significant impact on the wider European energy mix.” Said Ambassador Meier-Klodt: “There is a great opportunity for us all to work together and create a panEuropean solution to energy security and climate change issues that are priorities for our individual nations and the European collective right now. Based on what we have seen and heard here at Foynes, the opportunity is such that domestic requirements can be met from here but with significant additional capacity beyond that for a mix of opportunities, including electricity or green fuels exports into a market that wants it, Europe. That means Ireland has the opportunity to become a leading international renewable energy exporter. If it realises that opportunity, it will be good news for Ireland and good news for Europe in terms of climate change, energy security and the economy.” Said Chairman of Shannon Foynes Port Company David McGarry: “We’re delighted to have welcomed the Dutch and German ambassadors. Their visit follows that of other high ranking political and official figures from across the EU as well as energy developers over recent months. There is growing awareness and consensus that the opportunity off the Shannon Estuary is enormous because of our proximity to what are among the best winds in the world here on the west coast, the deep water we have that is essential for building out turbines at the scale required to harvest these winds, the availability of port sites needed for this and more. The conclusion being drawn is that the Shannon Estuary and Ireland is set to become a global player in renewable energy generation. There’s a lot of work to do in terms of infrastructure and investment if that is to be achieved but momentum is most definitely building.” Ends
31 August 2022Foynes to Limerick road is key infrastructure for unlocking Estuary’s potential as global renewable energy and logistics hub – Shannon Foynes Port The Chief Executive of Shannon Foynes Port Company, Pat Keating, has said that the Foynes to Limerick road is a one of the key infrastructure elements that will assist in unlocking the Shannon Estuary’s potential as a global renewable energy and logistics hub. Welcoming the approval of the road by An Bord Pleanála today, Mr Keating said that it is imperative that the development of the road is prioritised so we can capitalise on the unprecedented opportunity for the State from both floating offshore wind and improving the capacity of the national supply chain. “The granting of approval for the road is a hugely welcome development as it is critical enabling infrastructure for realising the potential of the Shannon Estuary as a global floating offshore wind energy and associated alternative green fuels production, and logistics hub. “The opportunity for the Estuary is at a scale that will be transformative from an economic perspective for the region and, indeed, the State. Moreover, it will have national and international impact on the fight against climate change as we have an infinite supply of renewable energy in the Atlantic accessed from the Shannon Estuary. These renewable resources will not only serve Irish energy demand but can also support Europe in unwinding its dependence on Russian gas by the production of green alternative fuels. “But for all that to happen, we need to transform our port infrastructure and the 35km Limerick to Foynes road is an essential element of that. Together with the regeneration of the rail link from Limerick to Foynes, the contract for which is now out to tender, this will ensure the port has the type of connectivity essential for it to play this pivotal role in Ireland’s future. “The road already has government backing through the National Development Plan and now has approval from the relevant planning authority. But we must ensure that the project is prioritised and that we can move quickly through to final approval stage and, ultimately, to the development of the road.” Mr Keating said that the Foynes to Limerick road has been a priority for the port authority since the launch of our masterplan, Vision 2041, almost a decade ago. “Such is the opportunity for the Estuary now that we have engaged Bechtel, who are world leaders in strategic planning and development of ports, to update it. We see the granting of approval for the road as further validation of this opportunity.” He added: “This new road facilitates the sustainable development of the immense renewable energy resources in the Atlantic by properly connecting the adjoining deepwater port of Foynes on the Shannon Estuary and as such is so much more than a road. It’s key to unlocking our green energy future as well as providing resilience on the national supply chain. So the commitment of the Mid-West Road Design Office, Limerick City and County Council, the wider stakeholder community and, indeed, An Bord Pleanála for its careful consideration, must be acknowledged in getting us to this important juncture.” Ends
16 August 2022Shannon Foynes Port welcomes tender for Limerick to Foynes rail reinstatement Road commitment also essential if estuary is to become renewable energy and logistics hub Monday, August 15, 2022: Shannon Foynes Port Company Chief Executive Pat Keating has said that the regeneration of the Limerick to Foynes rail line is one of two transport links essential for delivering on the unprecedented opportunity for the estuary as a global floating offshore wind energy and transhipment hub. Welcoming the recent opening of an ‘expression of interest’ tender for works on the 42km line, Mr Keating said that the rail link will be of great benefit to the wider project but even more essential is the road link to Foynes. “The expression of interest tender is a very significant moment within our wider plans to capitalise on the unprecedented opportunity for the Shannon Estuary as it gives even greater certainty that this important rail connectivity is going to happen. This is a strategic move that will enhance connectivity to Foynes port but also help to decarbonise the supply chain by transferring significant cargo tonnages from road to rail. “However, the primary access to and from Foynes will still be road and it’s essential that the Foynes to Limerick road goes ahead as soon as possible. It will carry by far the majority of goods to and from Foynes, goods and materials that rail cannot accommodate. So, while we are delighted with announcement regarding the reinstatement of rail, we look forward to an early commitment, too, on the Foynes to Limerick road,” he said. He continued: “We appreciate the expediency regarding the rail reinstatement but it is essential, too, that we get moving on addressing our road infrastructure. Shannon Foynes is a Core Corridor Port under the EU’s Ten-t Regulations. These regulations require that upgraded hinterland connections, ie road and rail, are in place by 2030. “In addition, the Shannon Estuary can become an international floating offshore wind and related green fuels generation hub, but our current road network links are an impediment to that. We must move quickly, however, as time is not on our side when it comes to energy security and climate change. The Estuary can be an enabler for addressing those critical issues for not just Ireland but Europe, with transformative economic as well as environmental impact, but it won’t happen without the necessary infrastructure,” he said. Mr Keating added that the rail project is also very much endorsed at European level. “In 2015 we secured €800,000 from the EU’s Connecting Europe Facility for a Feasibility and Detailed Design study, including all associated consenting requirements, for the regeneration of the rail link in 2015. Those works were completed in 2019 and were part funded also by Shannon Foynes Port Company and undertaken by Irish Rail. As a result, the reinstatement of the 40km Limerick to Foynes line is now shovel ready so moving to this next ‘expressions of interest’ stage to realise this opportunity is a key moment,” he said. Ends
27 July 2022
Annual report reveals that company is operating at historically high levelsTuesday, 26 July 2022: Shannon Foynes Port Company (SFPC) has reported another very strong year in 2021, with record earnings achieved for the year and profit before taxation exceeding €5.2 million for the first time. The performance was down to a mix of recovery from Covid-19 impacts sooner than expected, a resurgent economy and the supply/demand imbalance in the energy generation sector, the report reveals. With tonnage throughputs increasing by 16% to 10.9 million tonnes, turnover increased by 23.8% to €16 million (2020: €12.9 million). Tonnages were particularly strong in the agriculture and construction sectors, with the export of cement and related imports growing strongly. Overall, SFPC’s general cargo terminals of Limerick and Foynes performed strongly, with year-on-year throughput increases of 9.9%, manifesting in these terminals now operating at historically high levels. In addition to throughput and turnover growth, stringent cost management remained a core focus resulting in returning a significantly improved EBITDA margin of 47.5% (2020: 42.9%) and historically high EBITDA of €7.6 million (2020: €5.6 million). Commenting on the performance, Shannon Foynes Port CEO Patrick Keating said that despite challenges of 2022, he remained confident about the company’s future: “Notwithstanding the tragic events unfolding in Ukraine, we remain confident that there are significant opportunities to grow and expand the Port at the operating level. With an expanded business development function, we have identified targeted areas that will drive revenue growth over the short, medium and long term.” Mr Keating said that Since 2011 - the base year of the company’s masterplan, Vision 2041 - tonnage at its general cargo terminals increased by 60%, even accounting for the COVID contraction. This performance is also reflected in the company’s balance sheet, with net assets increasing by 281% to €54m since 2010 and with annual net operating cashflow increasing by over 170% over the same period. Mr Keating said that due to the increased tonnage throughputs projected in Vision 2041, the ongoing roll-out of the company’s investment programme is continuing at pace. Following the completion of Phase 1 at a cost of €12m, construction has now commenced on Phases II through to IV. These phases, costing a total of €33m, will involve construction of 117m of new quay to join the East and West Jetties, infilling for associated quay set down together with the development of 38 hectares site at Foynes as a port business park. These represent the largest capital projects ever undertaken by the Company and are scheduled to complete in 2023. Mr Keating said that the company will have a significant part to play in assisting the country’s transition to a low carbon economy due to its role as an international offshore renewable energy hub. “Our medium-term Capital Investment Program has been reviewed to ensure that the Port will have the necessary capacity for the medium term to accommodate this transition, particularly with regard to offshore renewables and deep water berth capacity,” he said. Commenting on the results, David McGarry, Chairperson of SFPC said: “The year not only recorded great financial success but also notable progress on several fronts with regards to SFPC’s Strategic Plan. With SFPC making strides internally, it also remains one of the foremost economic drivers for the Mid-West Region.” Mr McGarry said that the Board had made significant progress on realising the objectives of the Strategic Plan 2021–2025. The company has now updated its objectives with the drafting of a 2022-2026 Strategic Plan, which has been delivered to the Department of Transport and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, with the report expected to be approved soon. ENDS
28 June 2022Shannon Foynes Port Company strategy in keeping with RePower EU and The Green Deal plans – leading European Commission official states Professor Péter Balázs says port authority on right track during visit to Foynes Professor Péter Balázs, European Coordinator in the framework of a key European Commission transport infrastructure development programme, has said that Shannon Foynes Port Company’s long term plans to become an international renewable energy hub are fully aligned with EU policy. Professor Péter Balázs, European Coordinator for the North Sea-Mediterranean Core Network Corridor, said that the very ambitious plans of the Shannon Estuary port authority align with the overarching EU Green Deal strategy to become the first climate neutral continent by 2050 and the more recent RePower EU plan to transition away from dependency on Russian fossil fuel. Speaking following a visit to Foynes, during which he was updated on progress in relation to projects jointly funded by the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), Professor Balázs said that future funding applications must fit a number of key criteria, not least the importance of the wider project to Europe. Shannon Foynes Port Company’s plans, he said, go in the right direction. Professor Balázs was also briefed about the porty authority’s plan to put in place €300m plus of essential infrastructure, to enable the Shannon Estuary to become a global renewable energy player and exporter of clean energy and fuels into Europe, as well as develop unitised cargo activity. “This is my third visit to Foynes and I have been following the progress on its very ambitious plans very closely for several years and have been hugely impressed. When selecting projects, with regard to how best use the funding at disposal, the European Commission considers several key points, one of which is the European dimension of projects. Certainly, high on the agenda now is keeping with the EU’s The Green Deal. Other influencers now are, of course, adapting to the consequences of Brexit, which has fundamentally changed the geopolitical position of Ireland, the pandemic, which has interrupted many important supply changes, and now we have the impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. “Shannon Foynes Port’s strategy meets these requirements. When we came here first, Shannon Foynes was not on the map of the EU, but it was on the map of our long term thinking. We have extended the North Sea - Mediterranean corridor, which I am in charge of, to include Shannon Foynes, which increases the value of the Irish infrastructure. “The complex thinking that is being engaged in here is ultimately in keeping with improving the environmental conditions all across Europe by facilitating the generation of renewables, using modern fuels, saving energy, transforming the modal composition of transport by pushing freight from road to rail and water. There is a very special emphasis on The Green Deal objectives and what’s happening here aligns with that.” Ireland’s focus on becoming an exporter of green energy and fuels arising from floating offshore wind generation, Professor Balázs added, reflects very positively on its relationships within the Europe. “Ireland has been showing a good example. It is a good model in European cooperation. Something every member state could and should do is deepen integration within Europe, because in the fact of all the challenges we have today, it's important to strengthen cooperation and Ireland is a good partner in that sense,” he added. Shannon Foynes Port Company Chief Executive Pat Keating said that the visit was a timely validation of its strategy. “It’s five years since we had the opportunity to host Professor Balázs here and it was an opportunity for us to showcase the very positive impact of the funding we have received so far through the Connecting Europe Facility. The Connecting Europe Facility is a critical funding partner for us as we seek to put in place the infrastructure to realise the unprecedented opportunity we have from offshore renewables. This is opportunity is critical for the region, for the State but will also enable Ireland to become a significant contributor to the EU’s The Green Deal and RePower EU. We will be seeking EU funding for what we are trying to do but will be making a return back to Europe on that investment at a level perhaps not previously seen.” ENDS
10 June 2022
07 June 2022
Shannon Foynes Port signs MOU with world leaders in floating offshore wind
MOU with Norwegian Offshore Wind to support Ireland and Norway in reaching their renewable ambitions
Tuesday, June 7, 2022: Shannon Foynes Port Company has stated that Ireland has the potential to not only meet its climate change targets but become one of Europe’s leading renewable energy nations as it signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with one of the world’s leaders in offshore wind generation.The signing of the MOU with Norwegian Offshore Wind is a further endorsement of plans to transform the Shannon Estuary into an international floating offshore wind hub that will enable Ireland surpass long-term climate change targets and, moreover, become a major global renewable energy generator. The MOU will enable collaboration between SFPC and offshore wind interests in Norway, providing a framework for further collaboration on market activities towards both the Irish and Norwegian offshore wind market. Moreover, the agreement provides a platform for research, development and innovation (RDI) activities for Irish and Norwegian companies. Norway is already a world leader in offshore wind and its government last month launched a large-scale investment plan aimed at allocating sea areas to develop 30 GW of offshore wind capacity by 2040. "The ports in Norway and Ireland are a vital component in the supply chain in offshore wind, and thus imperative for the countries in Northern Europe to reach their renewable ambitions,” said Arvid Nesse, General Manager of Norwegian Offshore Wind. “This agreement will strengthen the cooperation between the ports along the Norwegian coast and one of the hubs for floating wind in Ireland. I am convinced that the agreement will create a cooperation platform for market and RDI activities that will be mutually beneficial for Norway, Ireland and the entire industry in Northern Europe. This agreement additionally provides Norwegian companies with opportunities in the fast emerging Irish offshore wind market", Shannon Foynes Port Company CEO Pat Keating said: “Norway is a world leader in the development of floating wind and it’s this very technology that will enable Ireland to not alone meet its longer term climate change targets but become an international energy hub for the first time in our history. The Shannon Estuary will be a key enabler of that because of its proximity to offshore winds and its deep waters, which are essential for supply chain. “Ireland’s potential from floating offshore wind generation off the West coast alone stands at 70GW, which is 12 times our current installed wind capacity on land. So what we now need to do is to realise that opportunity and being able to partner with global leaders like Norway will be a key enabler of that. Norwegian Offshore Wind’s partnership with us on this MOU reflects just how big that opportunity is and we look forward to working closely with them to progress this mutually beneficial relationship.” ENDS Norwegian Offshore Wind is a cluster organization located on the West coast of Norway with a national scope on delivering a strong global supply chain in offshore wind. NOW has over 350 member companies that cover the entire supply chain in offshore wind. Several ports along the Norwegian coast are member of the cluster and have an objective of positioning themselves in several offshore wind markets in the North Sea and beyond. The ports and relevant stakeholders in the cluster are looking for strategic partnership in Ireland. Shannon Foynes Port Company is Ireland’s second largest port operator and largest bulk port company, and has statutory jurisdiction over all marine activities on a 500km2 area on the Shannon Estuary, stretching from Kerry to Loop Head to Limerick City on Ireland’s Atlantic Coastline. Shannon Foynes Port Company is an EU Core Network Port (TEN-T) and a Tier 1 Port in the National Ports Policy, effectively designating the Shannon Estuary as a commercial water course of international significance. The Shannon Estuary represents a transformative economic and environmental opportunity as an international renewable energy and logistics hub. SFPC has recently appointed Bechtel, a world leader in strategic planning and development of ports, to update its Vision 2041 masterplan to maximise the opportunity emerging from offshore and onshore investment within and adjacent to its harbours in Ireland. ABOUT MOU The Norwegian Offshore Wind and Shannon Foynes Port Company MOU provides for the following:
- Shared events where the membership of both parties are invited to participate. Topics for such events to be decided by mutual agreement between the parties or by input from their membership.
- Opportunities to do business – both parties agree to disseminate opportunities to do business. These can take the form of ‘Meet the Buyer’ industry events in either country, knowledge of tender opportunities, innovation funding calls etc.
- Partnership working – encourage knowledge exchange between respective cluster members and assist the members to form partnerships or joint ventures to win new business (from any of the activities outlined in 2. above) or develop new products and services.
- Dissemination – support the sharing of media campaigns, press activity, online media and other promotional activity from either cluster through cluster networks
- Joint Research, development and Innovation projects – stimulate the parties to establish joint RDI projects in the Irish offshore wind marked or the Norwegian Offshore Wind market.
05 May 2022
Bechtel to deliver port masterplan to support Ireland’s emerging offshore wind industry
Shannon Foynes Port expansion will enhance its status as key hub for European trade and renewable energy Focus in updated plan will be on Estuary as a hub for floating offshore wind, hydrogen and other green fuels production and logistics Thursday, 05 May 2022: The transformative economic and environmental potential of the Shannon Estuary as an international renewable energy and logistics hub has been reaffirmed by the appointment by Shannon Foynes Port Company (SFPC) of Bechtel to advance its masterplan, Vision 2041. Bechtel, a world leader in strategic planning and development of ports, will update the masterplan to maximise the opportunity emerging from offshore and onshore investment within and adjacent to its harbours in Ireland. Vision 2041, which was launched in 2013, was Ireland’s first long-term port strategy and set out ambitious targets for the development of port infrastructure and services along the Shannon Estuary. The intervening period has seen all targets for investment and growth met by SFPC, which has now engaged Bechtel to work with it in updating the masterplan. This will have a strong focus on SFPC’s role as a key enabler of the unprecedented renewable energy opportunity from floating offshore wind off the Atlantic seaboard and related production of alternative shipping fuels that, together, will transform Shannon Foynes into a leading European port. Planned expansion at the port, including a new 1kilometer dock with depths of over 18m alongside and associated quayside storage, will increase port capacity to 20m tons per annum and will be accommodated by up to 1,200 hectares of land zoned for strategic development. The port’s proximity to the Atlantic wind resource provides the opportunity for it to become a major international renewable energy hub. Given the 80GW of capacity available off the Atlantic seaboard and the port proximity to this, SFPC will be a key enabler for Ireland reaching and surpassing its 20GW offshore wind target by 2050. The expanded facilities at Shannon Foynes would include hydrogen and ammonia production facilities for long-term energy storage and will also consider the export of the renewable energy/fuels produced. Bechtel’s role will be to assess and refresh the port’s masterplan to best leverage these advantages, further boost growth and support the region’s emerging offshore wind industry. John Williams, Bechtel’s managing director for the UK and Ireland said: “There is an increasingly strong case for investing in port infrastructure to support the growth in offshore wind and the importance of creating local supply chains cannot be underestimated. Ports act as focal points during the manufacturing, installation and operation of offshore wind farms and Shannon Foynes is strategically ideal to support Ireland’s offshore wind industry, as well as expand to play an even greater role in European shipping. We are excited to have the opportunity to partner with Shannon Foynes Port Company on their Masterplan update.” Patrick Keating, Chief Executive of SFPC said: “Nine years ago, Vision 2041 was considered a very ambitious masterplan, yet we have since met all the higher end growth targets identified for the interim period. In it we also identified the opportunity ahead for what were then only emerging sectors, such as offshore renewables. The Estuary is now viewed not alone by SFPC but the sector internationally as an emerging renewable energy supply-chain hub. In addition, there is the complementary growth potential for the estuary as a major logistics centre. “The acceleration of these opportunities necessitates the updating of Vision 2041 so that we have a strategic roadmap for realising the unprecedented opportunity for the company, the region and, indeed, the State. This is a critical moment for us and we are delighted to have Bechtel supporting us. Bechtel’s portfolio spans infrastructure, renewables, fuel production, and financing and makes them uniquely qualified to help us maximise the benefits of our deep-water advantage and our expansion plan, along with the job creation, supplier opportunities, economic growth that it will bring. We look forward to finalising the report over the coming months and unveiling this ambition to place Ireland at the global top-table for renewable energy and logistics.” Bechtel are global experts in ports, having delivered facilities around the globe, including Khalifa Port, the most advanced trading hub in the Middle East. Over 40 years ago, Bechtel was involved in the construction of Aughinish Alumina, the largest industrial complex on the Shannon estuary and adjacent to Foynes port. Bechtel is taking a growing position in Ireland supporting the renewal of infrastructure and the growth of renewables, having been recently appointed by daa as its integrated delivery partner for Dublin Airport’s capital investment program and also in supporting the Ervia Cork Carbon Capture Utilisation & Storage (CCUS) Project PreFEED study for the development of CO2 transport pipeline networks, liquefaction, storage, and shipping facilities for CO2 clusters in Ireland. This project is part funded by the European Commission under the Connecting Europe Facility funding instrument. Ends About Bechtel Bechtel is a trusted engineering, construction and project management partner to industry and government. Differentiated by the quality of our people and our relentless drive to deliver the most successful outcomes, we align our capabilities to our customers’ objectives to create a lasting positive impact. Since 1898, we have helped customers complete more than 25,000 projects in 160 countries on all seven continents that have created jobs, grown economies, improved the resiliency of the world's infrastructure, increased access to energy, resources, and vital services, and made the world a safer, cleaner place. Bechtel serves the Energy; Infrastructure; Nuclear, Security & Environmental; and Mining & Metals markets. Our services span from initial planning and investment, through start-up and operations. www.bechtel.com About SFPC SFPC has statutory jurisdiction over all marine activities on the Shannon Estuary and is Ireland’s, and one of Europe’s, deepest sheltered estuaries. The estuary covers 500-kilometre square of commercial waters stretching from Kerry to Loop Head to Limerick City. Alongside the world’s busiest shipping routes and with water depths of up to 32-metres, the port is uniquely positioned to expand as a cargo hub serving the domestic, European and worldwide markets. The port is already a key enabler of industrial activity and employment in the Mid-West region of Ireland and currently has the capacity to handle over 10-million tonnes annually.
16 March 2022
Shannon Foynes Port Company welcomes Government & The Department of Transport continued support and high priority listing of the need for the M21 Limerick-Adare Bypass/N69 Link to Foynes.Shannon Foynes Port’s record investment a key step in transforming estuary into international hub for floating offshore wind generation €28m investment will deliver new jetty infrastructure as well as one of Ireland’s largest logistics buildings A record €28million investment in jetty infrastructure and a port logistics park has been announced by Shannon Foynes Port Company today in a significant step in transitioning the Shannon Estuary into a major international renewable energy supply-chain hub. The unprecedent investment, which is fully and co-funded by Shannon Foynes Port Company and the EU’s ‘Connecting Europe Facility’, will include a significant expansion of quayside area through the joining and infilling of two existing jetties. This will deliver an additional 117m of jetty set down/storage area by linking the existing east and west jetties at the port, substantially boosting existing quayside set down space. Also included in the investment programme is the development of one of the country’s largest logistics buildings in a significant boost to national bulk and unitized freight supply chain infrastructure. The 127,000 sq ft facility will be the key element in a new 38 hectares port logistics park that will have the potential for a future 400,000 sq ft of modern logistics warehousing over the coming decade and a half. Planning permission and foreshore consents for the developments, which amount to the largest ever financial commitment in civil works by the port company, have been secured, with work already underway on the new jetty and associated set down area following construction procurement. Work on the logistics park, which will become the largest building at the Tier 1 international port, will commence in Q3 of this year, with all works completed in the first half of 2024. The Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), which is co-funding the project, is a key EU funding instrument to promote growth, jobs and competitiveness through targeted infrastructure investment at European level. It supports the development of high performing, sustainable and efficiently interconnected trans-European networks in the fields of transport, energy and digital services. CEF investments fill the missing links in Europe's energy, transport and digital backbone. Shannon Foynes Port Company Chief Executive Pat Keating said: “This investment reflects the unprecedented opportunity for the Shannon Estuary and Shannon Foynes Port Company. It represents the next stage of implementation of our investment programme and, importantly, lays the foundation for further required scalable capacity investments to accommodate growth in both the offshore renewable sector and the transport sector. For example, our objective to be the supply chain facilitator for an Atlantic floating offshore wind energy hub and related hydrogen production will be transformational in terms of our climate action targets, our national economy and energy security. “We have some of the most consistent winds in the world off the west coast, the technology now in place to harness those winds through floating offshore wind and, in the Shannon Estuary, the deep and sheltered waters necessary to build the floating devices before they are brought out into open ocean waters. The world’s leading players in this space want to invest here and leading nations, such as Germany, want the green hydrogen we can generate from this almost limitless renewable energy. But for all this to happen, we need to invest heavily in our infrastructure and the plans we are announcing today are significant step in that regard.” Shannon Foynes Port Company’s Offshore Floating Wind Study conservatively estimates that up to €12bn in associated supply chain investment could be located on the Shannon Estuary by 2050, with an opportunity to create up to 30,000 jobs. Spekaing on the significant investment in logistics, John Carlton, Engineering and Port Services Manager at Shannon Foynes Port Company said, “Our new logistics park will be a game changer for bulk and containerised goods in Ireland. There is unanimity around the need to counterbalance and build resilience in the national supply chain and, in keeping with the National Development Plan , a key facilitator of this is to promote regional development by optimising capacity outside the congested east coast. Developing modern logistics facilities at the deep-water port of Foynes provides new logistics solutions for the western half of the country, offering more efficient and sustainable market access for importers and exporters alike by reducing the ton per kilometer travelled.” Shannon Foynes Port Company Chairman David McGarry added: “When we launched our Vision 2041 masterplan in 2013, it was seen as a hugely ambitious strategy, yet we have reached its growth targets. The record investment we are announcing today, which is our biggest single commitment yet, is the latest but a key element of that masterplan.” Ends
21 December 2021
SFPC welcomes Government, Ministers and Department of Transport, multi-port approach for the development of Irish Ports for ORE as outlined in its new Port Policy Statement.
Government sets policy for Ireland’s commercial ports to develop infrastructure to support offshore renewable energy
Policy will encourage ports to apply for EU funding
Timely development as Oireachtas passes the Maritime Area Planning BillThe Department of Transport has published a Policy Statement setting out the strategy for commercial ports to facilitate offshore renewable energy activity in the seas around Ireland. The Policy Statement, noted by Government last week, will also assist Ireland’s commercial TEN-T ports in applying for EU funding to develop new infrastructure. It’s part of a series of Government measures to prepare for a massive expansion of offshore renewable energy, including the passing last week of the Maritime Area Planning Bill. The Programme for Government set a target for 70% of electricity to be generated from renewable sources by 2030 and for 5GW of offshore wind by 2030. The Climate Action Plan published on 4th November 2021 (CAP 21) has since increased the target to up to 80% renewable electricity by 2030. Both plans also set out how Ireland will take advantage of the potential of at least 30GW of floating offshore wind power in our deeper waters in the Atlantic. Given Ireland’s increased ambition in Offshore Renewable Energy and pending a review of overall National Ports Policy, the Department of Transport, in conjunction with the Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO), conducted an assessment of the options for Irish State ports to facilitate the ORE sector and assist in Ireland achieving its emission reduction targets. On receiving the recommendations of that assessment, the Minister for Transport has decided that a multi-port approach will be required. A number of ports will be required to provide facilities for the different activities at several locations around the country and at different times for the various phases of the fixed and floating ORE developments. This will maximise the economic benefits at both regional and national level in terms of job creation and new SME enterprises in areas such as engineering, fabrication, transport and logistics, and other technologies. With one of the best offshore renewable energy resources globally, there is very significant potential in utilising these resources to generate carbon-free renewable electricity. The development of this vast resource can enable Ireland to enhance the security of energy supply by substituting imported fossil fuels with indigenous renewable resources and, potentially, by developing an export market in green energy, either through electricity export from interconnectors or from power to gas such as hydrogen generation. Greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced, while delivering growth to the economy and supporting regional development. Commenting Minister Ryan said:- ‘Offshore renewable energy developments will typically require both large-scale port infrastructure for project deployment and smaller-scale port facilities to provide ongoing operation and maintenance services. Around the Irish coast, ORE projects will develop in several phases. To meet Ireland’s target of 5GW by 2030, it is clear that more than one port will be required. This will mean new jobs and new businesses in and near our ports, to support the development of offshore wind at various locations, beginning on the east coast and expanding to the west coast at a later stage. This approach is best suited to deliver the offshore renewable energy targets set out in the Programme for Government and the Climate Action Plan 21, and to position Ireland to take advantage of the economic opportunity created by the roll out of both fixed and floating offshore wind in Irish waters. This Policy Statement makes it clear to the offshore industry that the Government is committed to the provision of port facilities in Ireland for ORE developments, and I would encourage our TEN-T ports to apply for the EU funding that has recently been made available for this sector.’ A number of ports and private entities are already progressing plans to provide the facilities and infrastructure required to assist the ORE sector to develop in Ireland. This Policy Statement endorses that development. The plans underway include preparations for the provision of large-scale deployment facilities at Rosslare Europort and at Cork Dockyard facility (formerly Verolme Dockyard) located within the limits of the Port of Cork. Drogheda Port is also proposing developing largescale deep water port facilities on the East coast and Shannon Foynes Port Company and ESB are planning largescale development within the Shannon Foynes estuary. Wicklow and Arklow have already entered arrangements with individual ORE project developers to serve as operation and maintenance bases. It is recognised that there will be opportunities for other ports such as the ports of Waterford, Galway, Bantry under the Port of Cork, and the Fishery Harbour Centres of Ros an Mhíl, Killybegs and Castletownbere which are under the remit of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. The Department of Transport will establish a ports co-ordination Group to coordinate port responses and maintain policy alignment. A cross-departmental Offshore Renewable Energy Team, chaired by the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications, is being established to capture wider economic and business opportunities associated with the development of offshore renewables in Ireland. This will include the identification of supporting infrastructure development and supply chain opportunities as Ireland’s offshore wind industry is developed. Minister of State Hildegarde Naughton added:- ‘This Policy Statement gives clarity to the ORE sector and ports and I would strongly encourage ORE developers and ports to engage in meaningful commercial discussions. This will ultimately allow investments that are commercially viable in the long-term progress without undermining the ability of any port to meet its primary obligations in relation to the facilitation of international trade. This year, the criteria for Connecting Europe Funding facility (CEF) which is the funding instrument for the EU's Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T), was extended to allow partial funding for ORE related port infrastructure. This is a competitive process with the possibility of successful eligible TEN-T applicants obtaining significant grant funding of up to 50% of eligible costs for studies and up to 30% of infrastructure works costs. My Department will assist, as appropriate, those applicants that are eligible to put forward applications for studies or works under the CEF calls’. The Ministers also extended their thanks to the Irish Maritime Development Office for their assistance in the assessment process. ENDS
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