Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Questions (205)

Paudie Coffey

Question:

205. Deputy Paudie Coffey asked the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources the average lead time for the connection of new micro renewable generation infrastructure to the national electricity grid where there is an existing electrical connection to a business or domestic dwellings; the way that compares to other EU states; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10557/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Communications)

My Department have been in contact with ESB Networks (ESBN) regarding micro renewable generation. When a micro-generator has been installed and ESBN have received payment for the import/export meter along with the necessary Electro-Technical Council of Ireland (ETCI) electrical certification, ESB Networks will install import/export metering. ESBN have informed us that the average connection time is 10 days approximately. There is no charge to connect a micro-generator to the Distribution Network provided it complies with EN50438. The draft European standard EN 50438 outlines the requirements for the connection of micro-generators in parallel with public low-voltage distribution networks and defines micro-generation as a source of electrical energy and all associated equipment designed to operate in parallel with the low voltage system, rated up to and including:

- 25A at low voltage[230V], when the network connection is single phase, or

- 16A at low voltage [230/400V], when the network connection is three phase.

After the meter has been installed the customer must contact their electricity supplier regarding payment arrangements for any electricity that is exported to the grid. The customer will need to have an agreement with their electricity supplier to purchase the electricity exported and to supply the electricity imported. Both import and export must be with the same supplier. The approach to supporting micro-generated electricity production in Ireland is not out of line with other EU States.