Greenlink gets a greenlight

In: Windfarms
03/03/2021
Greenlink Interconnector Limited has welcomed the decision by Natural Resources Wales (NRW) to approve its application for a Marine Licence for the Greenlink electricity interconnector project, which aims to link the power markets of Great Britain and Ireland.

The Marine Licence is one of several consents required for the construction of the project and covers installation of the marine cable in UK waters. The approval by NRW follows onshore planning consents granted in July last year by Pembrokeshire County Council and Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority.

The
Greenlink interconnector has a nominal capacity of 500 MW, equivalent to powering 380,000 homes. It will consist of 160km of submarine cabling, with 30km of cable on land linking a substation in County Wexford in Ireland and National Grid’s Pembroke substation in south Wales. It will allow power to flow in either direction depending on supply and demand in each country. Greenlink represents significant additional interconnection capacity between Ireland and the UK, with onward connections to continental Europe.

Nigel Beresford, CEO for Greenlink Interconnector Limited, said: “We are delighted by Natural Resources Wales’s decision to grant this licence. This marks a significant milestone for Greenlink and another important step towards project construction, which we expect to commence later this year.

"The Greenlink team has worked constructively with Natural Resources Wales and Welsh marine stakeholders to find workable solutions to the many technical and environmental challenges facing a large infrastructure project like this, and this has been reflected in the quality of the final proposal.


The thorough environmental and technical assessments we have undertaken, supported by the practical and value-adding feedback we have received from key marine stakeholders, have ensured that we move forward confident that we are delivering a well-designed project with the interests of the Welsh marine habitat at its core.”


In Ireland, a foreshore licence application was submitted to the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Foreshore Unit) in 2019 and the onshore planning application was submitted to An Bord Pleanála in December 2020.

The project will offer important local supply chain opportunities and plans are being drawn up for ‘meet-the-buyer’ events in the local area prior to construction.

Once fully consented, Greenlink is expected to have a three-year construction programme, with commissioning planned by the end of 2023.


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