Friday 28 July 2017

EirGrid scraps plans for massive overhead power line running from Cork to Kildare

The move comes amid a massive public outcry about the project, with more than 35,000 submissions made to the company.
The move comes amid a massive public outcry about the project, with more than 35,000 submissions made to the company.

Paul Melia Environment Editor

NATIONAL grid operator EirGrid has scrapped plans for a massive overhead power line running from Cork to Kildare.

The €500m Grid Link project from Cork to Kildare via Wexford will not now go ahead, the company has confirmed this afternoon.

Instead, new technology will be used for the first time across the Irish power network which will allow more electricity to be transmitted along existing lines, eliminating the need for pylons.

The move comes amid a massive public outcry about the project, with more than 35,000 submissions made to the company.

The proposal involved erecting pylons more than 40 metres high across as many as nine counties, with proposals to install the lines underground being ruled out as too expensive, as it would result in a cost of up to €850m.

The new ‘Regional Option’ involves costs of some €250m being incurred to upgrade the existing network.

It uses a technology known as ‘series compensation’, which allows more power to flow through existing lines, and so eliminates the need for new overhead wires.

However, an underwater cable across the Shannon estuary will be required in addition to some upgrade works to existing transmission lines.

“The emergence of the new regional option means there is now no requirement to proceed with the previously proposed Grid Link 400 kV overhead line,” EirGrid chief executive Fintan Slye said.

“I am very pleased to confirm that we will now be moving ahead to deliver what I believe is a better option for all concerned. Finally, I would like to thank those communities who took the time to engage with us and provided us with such valuable feedback.”

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