Following the meeting Arlene Foster said: “The primary focus of energy policy world-wide is increasingly moving towards security of supply and the threat of climate change. We need to maximise the opportunities for cooperation, regionally, nationally and in Europe in the face of external political and economic pressures on energy supplies.”
The minister continued: “Minister Mather and I have agreed to meet on a regular basis to share thinking and to work on projects that can help deliver sustainable, secure and affordable energy for consumers. A key focus will be on practical measures to maximise the opportunities from our off shore renewable energy resources.”
Scottish Energy Minister Jim Mather said: “I am delighted to be working closely with the Northern Ireland Executive. We are already collaborating on a feasibility study for better grid connections and the potential for energy from marine biomass. We will continue to regularly progress ways of securing a sustainable and economically viable energy sector for the benefit of both our economies and our environments.”
Earlier this week Energy Minister Arlene Foster launched a scoping paper for a new strategic energy framework for Northern Ireland. The paper asks questions about the energy challenges facing Northern Ireland now and in the future. This will lead the way to further consultation in early 2009 on a new strategy for energy policy.