SEAI National Energy Projections 2023 report indicates early emission reductions are essential


SEAI published its National Energy Projections 2023 Report, which examines the potential impact of current Government policies and measures on energy use and related greenhouse gas emissions in Ireland from 2022 to 2030.

  • The earlier that annual emissions are reduced, the greater the impact on the growth of cumulative emissions. Fast tracking all actions could make a significant impact. 
  • Significant momentum is evident in many actions including those supporting delivery of renewable electricity, home energy upgrades and EV deployment.  

The report cautions that the current scale and pace of delivery mean it is uncertain that ambitious Climate Action Plan 2023 targets will be fully achieved. The report finds significant momentum in many actions including delivery of renewable electricity, household retrofit and electric vehicle deployment.  However, the rate of deployment required means targets are at risk, in particular those for biomethane, district heating, offshore wind, building retrofit, heat pump deployment and transport demand reduction. Even with full delivery of the Plan targets, the energy sector will likely still be off track to keep within its share of Ireland’s national legally binding carbon budgets for 2021-2025 and 2026-2030.  

William Walsh, SEAI CEO, explains: 

“Since the adoption of the Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Act in 2021, Ireland has seen record progress on the transition towards a low carbon economy. Home energy upgrade activity is running 150% ahead of the same time last year. Electric vehicles continue grow in popularity, with the market share at a new high of 18.5%. Government has allocated a record 310 million euro for the development of over 1,200 active travel infrastructure projects.   Unfortunately though, our projections analysis indicates that the current progress is not sufficient to keep within our legally binding carbon budgets.” 

William Walsh continued: 

“The report stresses that early corrective action is crucial; the earlier that annual emissions are reduced, the greater the impact on the growth of cumulative emissions. Fast tracking of all actions could make a really significant impact. Realistically, at this stage further new measures are required, combined with an acceleration of planned and existing measures to comply with Ireland’s legally binding carbon budgets and to reduce total final energy demand in line with the EU target. 

William Walsh concluded: 

“Sustainable energy investment unlocks a multitude of benefits and addresses a broad range of Government priorities. Society benefits from reduced energy costs and emissions and increased national energy security. Homes and buildings are warmer with improved air quality. Health outcomes improve with reductions in national and private health costs. Business and industry are more competitive, with more people employed in climate action related supply chains.  These benefits are far reaching but require brave decisions.  Government decision makers need to fully consider these benefits to properly contextualise the necessary investments. Let’s not avoid the tough decisions and actions needed today. Making them now means better outcomes for us all.” 

SEAI offers a range of Government funded supports for householders, businesses, and communities who want to reduce their fossil fuel use. For information on these supports and further details visit  

The Irish Government will soon publish an updated Climate Action Plan (2024) which is expected to provide further impetus to climate action in all sectors.  

Download the National Energy Projections 2023 Report here.