EirGrid has begun an eight-week consultation on its flagship Celtic Interconnector project

11 April 2019

EirGrid, the operator and developer of the electricity transmission grid, has begun an eight-week consultation on its flagship Celtic Interconnector project.

The state-owned company is looking for feedback on a shortlist of three proposed landfall locations on the coast of East Cork for the cable that will link the Irish and French electricity grids.

It is also seeking feedback on a shortlist of six proposed location zones for a converter station in East Cork. This is an industrial type building with electrical equipment that converts direct current electricity to alternating current and vice versa.

The Celtic Interconnector would be the first direct energy link between Ireland and France, running from East Cork to the north-west coast of France and would put downward pressure on the cost of electricity, enhance security of supply, provide a direct fibre optic telecommunications link, and facilitate further development of renewable sources. 

This is the latest round of consultation on the project. The previous round of consultation finished in 2018 and confirmed East Cork as the most suitable location for the project in Ireland.

The Celtic Interconnector comprises a 500 kilometre submarine electricity cable. There will be a further 40 kilometres of underground cable on land in both France and Ireland. It will have a capacity of 700 megawatts (MW), enough to power 450,000 households and will allow the import and export of electricity.

The proposed shortlisted landfall locations of Ballinwilling Strand, Redbarn Beach, and Claycastle Beach were selected from a list of five. The proposed shortlisted location zones for the converter station are in Ballyadam, Leamlara, Knockraha, Pigeon Hill, Kilquane and Ballyvatta. They were selected from a list of 14 options.

Each converter station location zone and landfall location was assessed against five criteria; economic, technical, environmental, socioeconomic and deliverability. 

EirGrid is encouraging communities and stakeholders to share their feedback on the proposed shortlists. 

“The shortlists are provisional. Feedback from communities, local representatives, and other stakeholders will be critical to ensuring that we can assess each option fully and make informed decisions when confirming the shortlists,” said Louise Glennon, company spokesperson.

All stakeholders and communities are invited to submit their feedback by Monday, 10 June. This can be done online, by attending public information days (see list below), or by email, phone or in writing.

The project is nearing completion of Step 3 of EirGrid’s six-step public consultation framework for infrastructure projects. When this phase of consultation is over and the stakeholder feedback has been analysed, EirGrid will confirm the two shortlists.  The shortlisted options will then be subjected to further assessments in order to determine the best performing option for each. 

The project is being jointly developed by EirGrid and Réseau de Transport d'Électricité, the electricity transmission system operator in France. It is expected to be completed in 2026.

Further information is available in our related documents section.

For further information contact: Louise Glennon, Senior Communications Specialist: 085 877 2886.

Notes to editors:

Public Information Days:

  • Lisgoold Community Centre - Tuesday 23 April - 2pm – 8pm
  • Knockraha Community Centre - Wednesday 24 April - 2pm – 8 pm
  • Carrigtwohill Community Centre - Tuesday 30 April - 6pm – 9pm
  • Midleton Park Hotel - Wednesday 1 May - 2pm – 8pm
  • Cloyne Parochial Hall -  Thursday 2 May - 6pm – 9pm
  • Walter Raleigh Hotel, Youghal - Friday 3 May - 2pm – 8pm

Video: Celtic Interconnector – what is it? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmtvcQhVZWk