An Bord Pleanála has approved the Celtic Interconnector Project, a €1bn underwater power line which will allow the exchange of electricity between Ireland and France.
The subsea interconnector will be the first of its kind between Ireland and mainland Europe, making landfall in Youghal, with an underground cable running from there to a new converter station which will be built near Carrigtwohill.
In 2019, the project received €530 million in funding from the European Commission’s Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) Energy Programme.
Last July EirGrid submitted the planning application to An Bord Pleanála for the Irish on-shore element of the Celtic Interconnector, incorporating feedback from local east Cork residents about the cable route between Youghal and Carrigtwohill.
The landfall in Youghal, cable route, converter station and network connection and associated technologies have now been approved subject to a number of conditions.
EirGrid chief infrastructure officer, Michael Mahon, said the project will help to improve security of electricity supply, achieve climate objectives, and reduce the cost of electricity.
“Our focus now moves to progressing the project to the construction phase, subject to the planning conditions,” he added.
A Foreshore Licence has been submitted for the offshore elements of the project in Ireland, and a marine licence is also required from the UK Marine Management Organisation.
Subject to securing these consents, it is expected the project will be built and energised by 2026.