EirGrid Group CEO Mark Foley

EirGrid Welcomes Northern Ireland Infrastructure Minister’s Decision On Critical North South Interconnector

14 September 2020

EirGrid operates and develops the electricity grid in Ireland. This includes interconnection with neighbouring grids and the wholesale electricity market. We send power from where it is generated to where it is needed, at the most economical price possible.

EirGrid welcomes the decision by Northern Ireland Minister Mallon MLA to approve planning permission for the North South Interconnector, which is critical to improving the security of electricity supply across the island of Ireland, helping us to move towards 70% renewable electricity by 2030 in Ireland.

The project is a much-needed high capacity and resilient link between the electricity grids in Northern Ireland and Ireland and will remove costly blockages on the network. It will allow for the flow of 900 MW of renewable electricity across the border, in both directions, enough to power 600,000 homes on green energy

Due to its economic, environmental and societal benefits, the North South Interconnector has received strong backing from Government and industry, given the importance of a resilient and well-connected electricity grid for Ireland’s economic wellbeing, and the role this project will play in meeting our environmental objectives.

"The North South Interconnector is undoubtedly the most important infrastructure scheme on the island today"

Commenting on today’s decision from the Infrastructure Minister, EirGrid CEO Mark Foley said:

“We welcome this positive decision from Minister Mallon. The North South Interconnector is undoubtedly the most important infrastructure scheme on the island today and will deliver very real benefits to domestic and commercial consumers, helping to unlock a green economic recovery.

“As we move beyond the immediate Covid-19 crisis to a new reality, it is critical that government does all that it can to unlock the potential of the green recovery and a green jobs revolution. This project will create local construction jobs through its delivery programme; will help reduce the cost of electricity and will provide a route to market for renewable energy at a time when the green collar sector needs it most.”

"The Interconnector is essential for ensuring local businesses have the power they need to expand and to attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), with investors seeking an efficient, green and secure electricity supply.

“Coupled with the extensive change needed to deal with the climate emergency, it is vital that Ireland’s electricity system plays its role in meeting these challenges. In this context, the North South Interconnector continues to underpin EirGrid’s vision for a clean energy system for Ireland.

"This vital project has been in the planning system for more than a decade, including extensive consultation; neither our economy nor our climate can wait any longer. Let’s get it done, together.”