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EU will provide €530 million in funding towards Irish-French power line

The project will link Ireland’s electricity network to France via an underwater connection and is expected to be completed by 2026

Image: Shutterstock/Feng Yu

THE EU WILL contribute €530 million to the Celtic Interconnector project which will connect Ireland’s electricity network to France.

The project, which will cost €1 billion, will link Ireland’s electricity network to France via an underwater connection and is expected to be completed by 2026 and will have the capacity to power 450,000 households.

It was announced in the Government’s Project 2040 plans, which said it would bring down electricity prices for consumers through increased competition.

It is also floated as a mechanism to increase levels of wind and renewable energy in ireland when Ireland joins the European Internal Energy market.

Speaking this afternoon, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Environment and Climate Action Minister Richard Bruton welcomed the contribution from the European Commission.

“The Celtic Interconnector will help to lower electricity prices, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and provide greater energy security,” Varadkar said. 

“It’s a direct result of our close working relationship with the European Commission including President Juncker, and France and President Macron, who will be our closest EU neighbours following Brexit.”

Bruton also added: “This vital piece of infrastructure is crucial to delivering the step up required to meet the climate challenge.”

“As well as the clear benefits in terms of improved security and diversification of electricity supply, it will also, importantly, facilitate the further development of renewable energy, helping us meet our 70% target.

“We can also expect consumer prices to come down as operators work in a more competitive market.”

The project is being jointly developed by EirGrid and its French counterpart Réseau de Transport d’Électricité (RTE).

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