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Electricity Grid

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 14 December 2021

Tuesday, 14 December 2021

Questions (88)

Alan Farrell


88. Deputy Alan Farrell asked the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications the status of the development of the Celtic Interconnector; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [61491/21]

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Written answers (Question to Environment)

The Celtic Interconnector is an electricity interconnector jointly proposed by EirGrid and the French Transmission System Operator, RTÉ (Réseau de Transport d’Électricité). It is proposed as a 575km long, with 500km of this being subsea, 700MW cable connecting the north-west coast of France to the south coast of Ireland. At this scale it would be able to provide electricity for some 450,000 homes.

The Celtic Interconnector will provide a reliable high-capacity electricity link between Ireland and France that will have significant benefits for electricity consumers in Ireland. The project will provide access to the European internal energy market, leading to expected increased competition and lower prices in Ireland. It will also enhance security of electricity supply and facilitate increased capacity for renewable energy here via export access to the mainland European markets.

In late 2019, the European Commission announced a grant of €530 million towards the construction of the interconnector under the Connecting Europe Facility fund. Following extensive planning and multiple periods of public consultation over the past number of years, EirGrid decided earlier this year on the interconnector’s route in East Cork. EirGrid have further decided to establish an enhanced community benefit scheme for neighbouring communities. EirGrid will continue to engage with the public on this project in the coming months and years.

While I have no function in the area of consenting for the interconnector, I understand from EirGrid that applications to all relevant consenting authorities are now submitted. Statutory public consultations with regard to the planning and foreshore licence applications have been held in recent months.

Question No. 89 answered with Question No. 51.