Minister excuses delays in setting fixed tariff prices

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Delays in implementing Ireland's new fixed "feed-in" style tariff for renewable energy are due to difficulties in drafting some of the conditions, said Martin Finucane from the Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources at the Irish wind energy annual conference at the end of March. "This has taken longer than envisaged. It is a very complex system to get in place," he says. "I can understand the frustration within the wind industry." Under the new structure for standard offer contracts, which is expected to be launched imminently, large wind projects of over 5 MW will receive EUR 0.057/kWh, while small wind receives EUR 0.059/kWh. Indexation of the prices to keep up with inflation will be significantly increased compared to the government's original proposals outlined in September 2005, Finucane explained. "A lot of the [consultation] responses we got from the industry showed that that area did need reworking," he said.

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