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Over 90 delegates, businesses leaders, elected representatives, stakeholders and media joined firmus energy for its 10th annual energy market briefing on Thursday 24th September. Participants joined the live session to hear from some of the leading voices in the energy and financial sector who provided an insight into current energy trends, opportunities, challenges and the wider impact on the local economy.

firmus energy has over 50,000 customers in its Ten Towns network area and currently supplies more than 100,000 domestic and business customers across Northern Ireland. The gas supply and distribution company held its first firmus energy market briefing in 2011 which has since become a highlight in the energy sector’s business calendar.

firmus energy Chairman, Dr David Dobbin CBE hosted a panel of industry experts including Bord Gais traders Joe Egan, Niamh O’Dwyer and Stan Linehan who spoke about energy market trends, European gas storage levels and the impact of geopolitical events as well as Northern Ireland’s gas prices.
Ulster Bank Chief Economist Richard Ramsey was also present to provide commentary on the Northern Ireland economic recovery, government interventions and the financial impact of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

Michael Scott, Managing Director of firmus energy.
Michael Scott, Managing Director of firmus energy.

As part of the event Michael Scott, Managing Director at firmus energy provided an update on the business. He said:
“Our energy market update provides an important opportunity to hear from some of the leading industry voices in the energy and economic sector and we are pleased that participant numbers continue to grow. We are also delighted to have been able to use the event to launch our first annual stakeholder report.

“In recent months firmus energy’s business has reached some significant milestones – supplying our 100,000th customer and growing the Ten Towns natural gas network to over 1,700 km.

“We have delivered sustained growth on an ongoing basis. Our original business plan was to connect around 2,000 customers a year but we’ve more than trebled that and are currently delivering in excess of 6,000 new gas connections each year.

“By the end of 2022 Northern Ireland’s natural gas infrastructure will have passed over 550,000 properties. This presents an opportunity to expedite the conversion to natural gas of a further 230,000 properties and realise a total carbon reduction saving of 1.7million tonnes of CO2 each year.
“firmus energy also has multiple opportunities to extend our network into new towns and villages such as Crumlin, Glenavy and Portstewart, all of which represent significant investment.”

Key themes of the briefing included the role of natural gas in a zero carbon future, the impact of the ongoing pandemic on energy supply and demand, and the growing importance of LNG in the global gas market. Delegates also had the opportunity to take part in a Q&A hosted by firmus energy director Paul Stanfield.

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