State-owned energy company EirGrid has today published a series of short information videos on the North South Interconnector project. The videos address some of the most frequently asked questions about the project and are available here.
EirGrid spokesperson David Martin said: “These videos are part of an approach to ensure that there is clear information on concerns that people may have about the proposed project. Other elements of this approach include offering meetings with local residents, landowners and groups to discuss their particular concerns.
In reviewing public feedback on the North South Interconnector project, it was clear that many of the issues related to six particular topics. These are: The need for the project; proposals to underground the project; consideration of tourism; public consultation; impact on land use and health concerns. Each of these concerns is addressed in one of the six web videos that we have launched today.
"We have also published a new brochure, which provides a more in depth explanation of the six key concerns. Both the videos and the brochure are available at www.eirgrid.com .”
Earlier this year EirGrid worked with NALA, the National Adult Literacy Agency, for guidance on communicating in clearer language. This is part of a commitment to ensure greater awareness of the effects and benefits of investment in the electricity transmission system.
An Bord Pleanála is currently considering plans for the 137-kilometre line, stretching from Meath to Tyrone through counties Cavan and Monaghan; though more than 1,500 submissions were lodged with the North East Pylon Pressure Committee (NEPPC) leading the campaign against putting the pylons over the ground.
There is only a single such interconnector between the two networks and a second interconnector, Eirgrid has said, will increase both the capacity and the reliability of the network.
This is a joint proposal between Eirgrid and System Operator Northern Ireland (SONI) who are responsible for the grids and the ESB and Northern Ireland Electricity are responsible for the construction. They have estimated the economic benefit by 2020 of the development at €20m, rising to €30m by 2030.
Eirgrid also previously said that a local fund of €4m (ie €40,000 per kilometre in the Republic) would be made available for community organisations in areas in proximity to the overhead route. A one-off payment of €30,000 has also previously been suggested by Eirgrid to be paid to residents living within five metres of the overhead lines and €5,000 to those within 200 metres.
Eirgrid can be contacted on lo-call number 1890 252 6901 and meetings can be arranged at its offices in Navan, Cootehill or Carrickmacross.