Wednesday, February 13 11:59:45
Energy consumption in Ireland decreased by 12 per cent between 2008 and 2011.
This is the second largest drop in the EU, according to figures issued today by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.
The figures also show that Ireland is one of the most energy dependent countries in the EU with almost 89 per cent imports.
The Irish figures are in line with the EU as a whole where the economic slowdown observed since the beginning of the financial crisis is also visible in the evolution of energy consumption. Gross inland energy consumption in the EU27 fell from a level of 1 800 million tonnes of oil equivalent2 (toe) in 2008, to 1 700 mn toe in 2009, increased to 1 760 mn toe in 2010 and then fell again to 1 700 mn toe in 2011. Between 2008 and 2011, energy consumption in the EU27 has decreased by 6pc.
The energy dependence rate, defined as net imports divided by gross consumption, and which shows the extent to which a country is dependent on energy imports, was 54pc in the EU27 in 2011, nearly stable since 2008.
The five largest energy consumers in 2011 in the EU27 were Germany (316 mn toe, -7.7pc compared with 2008), France (260 mn toe, -4.6pc), the United Kingdom (199 mn toe, -9.4pc), Italy (173 mn toe, -4.8pc) and Spain (129 mn toe, -9.4pc), which together accounted for nearly two thirds of total EU27 consumption.
Twenty-three Member States registered decreases in their energy consumption between 2008 and 2011, and four increases. The largest falls were recorded in Lithuania (-24.5pc), Ireland and Greece ( both -12.3pc) and the highest increases in Malta (+16.9pc) and Estonia (+4.8pc).
In 2011, the least dependent Member States on energy imports were Estonia (12pc), Romania (21pc) and the Czech Republic (29pc). Denmark (-9pc) was a net exporter of energy and therefore had a negative dependence rate. The highest energy dependence rates were registered in Malta (101pc), Luxembourg (97pc) and Cyprus (93pc).