The Route Option Consultation Process
Our six-step approach to consultation and engagement
Our ‘Have Your Say’ publication outlines our commitment to engage with, and listen to, you and all stakeholders. It outlines our detailed six-step approach to developing our projects, and how you can get involved at every step.
Our ‘Public Engagement Strategy’ publication reinforces our commitment to engaging with our stakeholders in the development of projects like this. You can get a copy of both of these publications at www.eirgrid.ie.
Figure 1: Our six-step approach to developing the electricty grid
This project is currently in Step 4. In this step, we will consult and identify exactly where the underground electricity cables will be built.
What has happened so far?
In Step 1, we identified the need for the Kildare-Meath Grid Upgrade.
In Step 2, we compiled a shortlist of best performing technical options, which went out for public consultation between November 2018 and February 2019. These options included a mix of overhead line, underground cable and upvoltage technologies. Four of those options were taken forward to Step 3 in April 2019.
In Step 3, we re-confirmed the need for the project. We identified that one of the shortlisted technology options could be done in two different ways. For this reason we had five options. We investigated and consulted with you on the shortlisted technology options to strengthen the electricity network between Dunstown and Woodland. In April 2021, we identified the 400 kV underground cable option as the best performing option to progress for this project.
Step 4 Studies
As part of Step 4, we have identified 4 potential underground cable route options and are consulting with you on these now. We are also doing further investigations, which build on those we completed in Steps 1, 2 and 3. We are assessing and comparing these investigations under five categories:
1. Technical aspects;
2. Economic factors;
3. Environmental factors;
4. Socio-economic factors – such as the local economy and local amenities; and
5. Deliverability factors – such as timeline and potential risks.
Outcomes for Step 4
The expected outcomes (results) of Step 4 are to:
- Consult with you on the 4 route options;
- Publish a consultation report on the feedback we received in Spring 2022;
- Announce an emerging best performing route option in Summer 2022 and consult locally with stakeholders on this; and
- Announce a final route option in Autumn 2022, identifying exactly where we will build the project. This step will not include applying for planning permission. This will be completed in Step 5.
Step 4 at a glance
We have identified 4 potential route options to upgrade the electricity grid between Kildare and Meath. We are consulting with you on this.
How long will this take?
Step 4 will take us into Summer 2022. However, we will be engaging on an ongoing basis.
What can I influence?
You can influence where we build this project.
How can I get involved?
You can get involved in different ways. We are engaging and consulting at local level with members of the public, landowners, and local representatives from the study area. We are also speaking directly to elected representatives, specialist representative groups, environmental and planning agencies.
You can share your views from 31 August to 22 November 2021. Find out more at: www.eirgrid.ie/KildareMeath.
Who can I contact?
If you would like to find out more information, register to receive update emails or give feedback on this project, you can email KildareMeath@ eirgrid.com or contact your local Community Liaison Officer:
Gráinne Duffy on +353 (0)85 887 4798.
Kildare-Meath Grid Upgrade Community Forum
The Kildare-Meath Grid Upgrade Community Forum offers advice to us on key project developments such as:
- how we communicate and engage with the public;
- what we need to consider in developing the project; and
- how we can deliver meaningful community benefit to the area where our infrastructure is hosted.
The forum acts as a consultative body and does not replace any other engagement and consultation we carry out.
How the forum was developed
In May 2021 we appointed an Irish charity called Development Perspectives as the independent Chair of the Kildare-Meath Grid Upgrade Community Forum. In June 2021 we held an information evening about the setup of the forum. We then opened a public nomination period where community groups were invited to express an interest in sitting on the forum. We also invited Kildare County Council and Meath County Council to nominate elected representatives onto the forum, which is ongoing.
The community forum held its first meeting on 14 July and has since met on 11 August and 30 August.
The forum will continue to meet regularly to provide feedback, for project updates and to ensure two-way communication is on-going. To be kept informed of forum activity, visit our website : www.eirgrid.ie/KildareMeath.