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Greenlink welcomes Irish electricity regulator’s positive consultation on new support regime

27 March 2020. Greenlink Interconnector Limited (Greenlink) [1] has today welcomed the publication of a consultation [2] by the Commission for the Regulation of Utilities (CRU), which sets out that the CRU is minded to grant a new ‘cap and floor’ [3] regulatory regime for Greenlink .

The CRU’s eight-week consultation was launched on 26th March and the CRU plans to publish its draft determination in the third quarter of 2020. This will set out the precise details of the cap and floor regime, a system of support that limits market exposure for consumers whilst facilitating the efficient financing of the project.

Nigel Beresford, CEO of Greenlink, commented;

“We welcome the CRU’s announcement on a new regulatory regime to support the Greenlink interconnector in Ireland. It creates a positive environment for continued private capital financing of this critical energy infrastructure project and its delivery.
The proposed regime will support the Irish government in meeting its energy policy objectives - on energy security, decarbonisation and investment in renewable energy like offshore wind - whilst also protecting the consumer by driving down costs.
We look forward to engaging further with the CRU in relation to the detailed implementation of the cap and floor in Ireland.”

The CRU consultation follows its determination in October 2018 that the construction and operation of the interconnector was in the public interest. The implementation of a cap and floor regulatory regime in Ireland would mirror the regulatory arrangements for interconnectors in the UK through Ofgem.

The consultation period will last for eight weeks, closing on 21 May 2020, and details on how to submit comments[4] can be found at https://www.cru.ie/document_group/greenlink-electricity-interconnector/


Procurement for the major construction contracts is currently under way and agreements have been signed for connecting to the grid in Ireland and Wales, with EirGrid and National Grid respectively. Marine planning applications have been submitted and planning applications for the onshore works in Wales and Ireland are being prepared. The project is expected to have a three-year construction programme before commissioning in 2023.


CONTACT FOR MEDIA ENQUIRIES:

Anna Stanford, Communications Consultant: +44 7961 234634 Anna.Stanford@greenlink.ie

Sean Perry, Keating & Associates: M: +353 87 910 5013 sean@keating.ie

Notes to Editors:

1. About Greenlink

Greenlink Interconnector Limited is owned jointly by Element Power Holdings, part of Hudson Sustainable Investment, and Partners Group on behalf of its clients. Greenlink is a proposed interconnector linking the power markets in Ireland and Great Britain. The project comprises a subsea and underground cable and associated converter stations to connect EirGrid’s Great Island transmission substation in County Wexford (Ireland) and National Grid’s Pembroke transmission substation in Pembrokeshire (Wales). It has a nominal capacity of 500MW. The project is expected to be fully operational by 2023. More details at: www.greenlink.ie @Greenlink_IC

2. https://www.cru.ie/document_group/greenlink-electricity-interconnector/

3. Cap and Floor limits market exposure for consumers by setting a ceiling on the revenues that Greenlink can receive, whilst reducing the cost of the project by facilitating low cost equity and debt capital. A ‘Cap and Floor’ regime in Ireland would create symmetry between the regulatory regimes in Ireland and GB.

4. Comments on the consultation should be sent to electricityinterconnectors@crui.ie

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