At SONI we work to deliver a safe, secure, economic and reliable electricity network. This can mean the need to invest in and improve the transmission grid – essential to make your electricity supply more cost effective and reliable. It also supports economic growth and enables competition. We also need to develop the grid so it can connect to new sources of renewable energy and this is what we propose to do via the Agivey Cluster Project. We’ve put together a short brochure which we hope you will find helpful.
In September 2010 the then Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment (DETI) published the Strategic Energy Framework (SEF) in which it set a target for 40% of electricity consumption within Northern Ireland to be generated from renewable sources by 2020. Transmission infrastructure such as the Agivey Cluster Project is vital in helping to achieve these targets.
Connecting wind farms to the electricity network in Northern Ireland is driven by European, United Kingdom and Local Government legislation.
At SONI we are obliged under our licence, to connect parties who request a connection to the electricity network, subject to the applicant meeting certain conditions. We are responsible for elements of transmission works such as site selection, route selection and gaining planning consent, which take place before a project moves into the construction phase. NIE Networks are then responsible for the eventual build of that infrastructure.
In some locations, and to some observers, electricity infrastructure has a visual impact on the landscape. We aim to create as little disturbance as possible. That's why a cluster connection policy was developed by NIE Networks and, following consultation, approved by the Utility Regulator (NIAUR) to connect a number of windfarms located in close proximity.
Wind farms in the Craiggore, Smulgedon, Evishagaran areas have collectively met the criteria for connection via a cluster substation. This has resulted in the need for the Agivey Cluster Project which if approved, will connect these windfarms to the grid.
SONI’s planning application for the Agivey Cluster Project will be submitted to and decided by Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council.
We aim to submit a planning application in the middle to latter part of 2018. We hope to obtain planning approval in 2019. Should planning approval be granted, this project will be handed over to NIE Networks to proceed with construction.
SONI is seeking planning permission for the following:
Potentially located in and traversing through the townlands of:
Brockaghboy, Dunnavenny and Drumbane.
The Agivey Cluster Project will bring benefits, including: