The energy supply of data centres should be cut off to prevent blackouts, Michael Ring TD has said.
Demand for energy is surging due to the cold weather but Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has insisted that it is “highly unlikely" that households will be hit by blackouts.
“There will be periods when the margin between supply and demand will be very tight,” he told the Dáil.
“We think that is particularly going to be the case over the course of the next week or two because temperatures will be very cold and the wind will not be very strong.
“For that reason, demand for electricity will be high but generating capacity will be stretched.
Data centres have their own generating capacity and Deputy Ring said these should be cut off from the grid first.
“It is concerning,” he told Newstalk.
“And if there’s going to be cuts, let them do the major data centres.
“Let them not be cutting [off] and frightening elderly people.
“They must make sure that the power is left on in the houses and let the data centres be cut off and keep the supply for the households.”
Met Éireann has predicted that the cold snap could potentially last until late next week.
Main image: A data silo with magnetic tapes is pictured at the German Climate Computing Centre (DKRZ) in Hamburg, Germany, 25 February 2013. Photo: Sven Hoppe