Overall Gas Demand Fell by 11% in February

Demand for Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) Showing Strong Growth

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A mild February saw Ireland’s overall gas demand fall by 11% compared to January, and decrease by 25% in the residential sector month on month. Year-on-year, gas demand increased by 7%.

While still modest in the overall mix, demand for compressed natural gas (CNG) increased by 11% year-on-year, and it was one of the strongest sectors of the market in percentage growth terms during the month.  

CNG is natural gas which is compressed to fit into a vehicle’s tank and is particularly suitable for heavy goods vehicles (HGVs).

Gas Networks Ireland’s Acting Director of Strategy and Regulation Brian Mullins, said:

“It’s great to see the continued increase in demand for CNG. Ireland’s commercial transport fleet makes up just 3% of vehicles on the road, yet is responsible for approximately a fifth of transport’s carbon emissions. It’s also one of the most difficult sectors to decarbonise.

“While electricity is a proven alternate fuel for cars, electric solutions are not a viable option for use in heavy goods commercial vehicles. However, CNG is; and can reduce a HGV’s emissions by up to 22%.”

Gas demand from the air travel1 and retail sectors fell by 24% and 16% month-on-month respectively in February. There were also month-on-month decreases in the leisure/sport arenas (-18%), manufacturing (-18%), education2 (-16%) and offices3 (-15%) sectors.

Gas was the main source of Ireland’s electricity generation in February, as it was during the month of January. Gas provided 45% of the State’s electricity generation demand in February - a significant increase of 61% on a very windy February in 2022. Gas peaked at 79% during the month, and never fell below 14%.

Wind energy generated 42% of electricity in February. It peaked at 79% but given the variable nature of weather dependent renewable energy sources, there were also times in the month when the wind supply dropped almost completely and contributed less than 1% of electricity generation.

Coal generated 5% of February’s electricity, falling significantly when compared to February last year (-55%).

Gas Networks Ireland also recently published its latest report “Ireland’s Gas Network – at the heart of Ireland’s energy future”, outlining the key role that gas plays in Ireland’s energy ecosystem today; as well as the utility’s revenues of €476m and the €38m dividend paid to the Exchequer. This report is available online at www.gasnetworks.ie/gas-report.

1 ‘Air travel’ refers to airports
2‘Education’ refers to large educational campuses
3 ‘Offices’ refers to large office campuses