"Rocky" years ahead for consumer energy prices in wake of Russian oil ban, warns Taoiseach
The Taoiseach described the agreement to the ban as a "watershed moment".
Taoiseach Micheál Martin has warned that Irish consumers are in for some "rocky" years ahead following European Union leaders agreeing on Monday (30 May) to fresh sanctions on Russian oil.
The leaders agreed in principle to the sixth sanctions package against Russia for invading Ukraine, which would see a ban of almost 90% of all Russian oil imports into the EU.
Speaking in Brussels on Tuesday, the Taoiseach said he was "very pleased" that the decision was taken and that it "will hurt Russia".
He also described it as a "watershed moment" in terms of the EU's dependency on Russian oil, as well as fossil fuels in general.
Significant sanctions on Russian oil decided by #EUCO last night.
These will hurt Russia. Genuine unity in Europe, despite the challenges.
A watershed moment for fossil fuels and a need to double down on renewables like offshore wind – a game changer for Ireland. pic.twitter.com/0D9kSE9ZlH
— Micheál Martin (@MichealMartinTD) May 31, 2022
However, the Taoiseach added that it will "make for fairly rocky territory over the next number of years in terms of pricing around fossil fuels".
"We cannot get away from that," he warned, stating that there will have to be a doubling down on the production of renewable energy.
"On the other hand, what's clear from the presentation from the President of the Commission [Ursula von der Leyen] is that there's a need to double down on renewables and a lot of focus from the Commission now on the permitting systems within member states, including our own, in terms of renewable energy."
The Taoiseach said there is also now a need to get offshore wind projects in place much sooner than originally intended.
He also stated that the Government "will do everything" it can to alleviate the pressures of high energy prices on Irish consumers.
Main image via Sam Boal / RollingNews.ie