The Republic of Ireland covers an area of 70,283km2 and has a population of 3.8M. There are 16 large dams (classified as higher than 15m high). The total installed capacity of the nine hydro plants owned by the Electricity Supply Board (ESB) is 249MW. ESB also owns a 292MW pumped storage plant.

There are a number of privately owned small or mini hydro plants with a combined capacity of approximately 13MW.

About 80% of the technically feasible hydro power potential of 1180GWh/year has been developed. There are no dams of consequence under construction or planned.

In recent years the largest hydro plant in the country, at Ardnacrusha, has been refurbished and uprated from 85MW to 9 1MW but currently there are no plans to refurbish any other plants.

The emphasis on electricity generation in Ireland is currently on gas/oil combined cycle power plants with very little prospect of any large dams being constructed. Although there are some small hydro developments planned.