Celtic Interconnector: interconnection project between France and Ireland
In France, the project is part of the Ten Year Network Development Plan (TYNDP) set up in 2012.
It is also featured in the EirGrid development plan.
Celtic Interconnector, the first interconnection between France and Ireland
In 2017 and 2018, RTE held preliminary consultations with stakeholders essentially consisting of local players (State departments, municipalities, elected representatives, NGOs, etc.) potentially affected by the sub-marine and underground connection, as well as the future converter station. The purpose of these discussions was to get feedback from the regions about their medium and long-term infrastructure and development plans.
In accordance with French legislation and with EU regulations governing European energy infrastructure, the consultation was extended in the autumn of 2018. It resulted in the agreement of a potential siting area. A broad public consultation was arranged under the aegis of the two sponsors appointed by the National Public Debate Commission (CNDP), on the basis of a court referral by RTE. The findings issued further to this consultation helped to determine the best possible siting for the electrical structures being built: the future submarine and underground electrical connection (identification of the "least disruptive" route), the landfall site for connection of the submarine and underground lines, as well as the converter station (substation for connecting the line to the existing network).
Involving local players, the consultation (known as the "Fontaine" consultation) ended on Friday the 5th of July with a presentation of potential "least disruptive" routes to the stakeholders (State departments, elected representatives, municipalities, etc.). Gilbert Manciet, the Morlaix sub-prefect, agreed on the least disruptive siting corridor for the project’s terrestrial and maritime structures. This outcome was endorsed on the 25th of October by the Department of Energy and Climate Strategy, attached to the Ministry for Environmental Transition and Solidarity.
France’s Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE) and Ireland’s Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU) passed a joint decision on the 25th of April 2019 for the funding of the Celtic Interconnector project.
2. Impact study and public-opinion survey
Impact study: 2019-2020
Public-opinion survey: 2021
Since the endorsement on the 25th of October – by the Ministry for Environmental Transition and Solidarity – of the least disruptive* siting corridor, RTE has continued to develop the project with the conduct of an economic and environmental impact study.
The aim is to determine a more exact route while continuing to consult with local players. A public-opinion survey will be held in 2021.
*Corridor within which, following detailed studies, the exact routes and locations of future electrical structures will be agreed.
4. Supply chain and construction
Supply chain and construction: 2022-2025
5. Testing and commissioning
Testing and commissioning: 2026