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Farmer co-operative: Don't ghettoise wind pricing

Ireland's electricity regulator must ensure that green energy -- in particular wind power -- is not "ghettoised" in the country's new regulatory regime. This was the key demand of farmers' co-operative Meitheal na Gaoithe when it met the commissioner for electricity regulation, Tom Reeves, in May. Pricing structures under the new trading code are unfavourable to wind, points out Meitheal na Gaoithe. It calls for them to be amended to allow net metering for small scale wind producers and a single price for "top-up" and "spill" from renewable energy plants which either produce less or more power than projected for a given period. The co-operative also wants fairer transmission system charges and easier access to the grid. According to Declan Rice from Barrow Nore Suir Rural Development, Reeves was "well disposed" towards net metering. "He also undertook to examine the issues of grid connection and a single price for top up and spill," says Rice. "His main concerns were stability of the grid and that he did not discriminate unfairly against other participants in the market."

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