Ireland plans to close oil refineryStaff writer ▼ | August 2, 2013
The report "Study of the Strategic Case for Oil Refining Requirements on the Island of Ireland" says that "there is no imperative for the island of Ireland to have its own refining assets, and the current infrastructure would be capable of supplying the required product imports".
In statement following the report's publication, Minister for Energy Pat Rabbitte said the Government's primary conclusion is that having an operating oil refinery here increases the options available if supplies are disrupted and mitigates complete dependence on imports.
"As such, the continued operation of the Whitegate refinery on a commercial basis is highly desirable. An operating refinery also adds value to the Irish economy and provides significant employment," said Mr. Rabbitte.
Mr. Rabbitte added that his department intended to communicate with the oil industry and public bodies to determine what policies were needed to facilitate the commercial future of refining in Ireland. According to the report, oil accounted for almost 60 percent of the Republic's energy consumption in 2011.
The document points out that, taken as a whole, the existing import facilities could supply total oil demand , although it adds that this results in additional costs of €9.5 million a year in areas of south Munster. ■