Friday, 17 October 2008

Grid25 to double capacity of National Grid by 2025

Grid25, the EirGrid strategy for Ireland's future electricity transmission network, has been launched. It will involve doubling the capacity of the national bulk transmission grid by 2025.

This will be achieved through a combination of upgrading the existing network and the construction of new transmission infrastructure, in a manner that balances cost, reliability and environmental impact. As per the information available, the plan will require the replacement or upgrading of over 2,300km of power lines and the building of a further 1,150km.

The strategy involves an investment of €4 billion in essential infrastructure over the next 17 years in the period to 2025, with appropriate regulatory oversight by the Commission for Energy Regulation (CER).

The scheme will be funded through the introduction of a "transmission tariff" on domestic and commercial customers of 0.2pc. For a household receiving an average electricity bill of €100 every two months, this would equate to an increase of 20 cents on each bill until 2025.

EirGrid chief executive Dermot Byrne said: "We are forecasting growth in electricity demand of 60 percent over the period to 2025. Our role is to ensure that electricity infrastructure does not become a barrier to the social and economic development of any region or county. Grid25 is our strategic response to this challenge."

"When the Grid25 strategy is implemented, not only will Ireland be in a position to exploit our rich renewable resources, but, when fully connected to the UK and European grid, Ireland can also secure its supply and become anet exporter of electricity from renewable sources," added Byrne.

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