Ireland bags EU cash for smart networks

Ireland is in line for a €235million loan from the EU to fund an “ambitious” programme to revamp its electricity infrastructure. Irish utility, the Electricity Supply Board (ESB), will use […]

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By Vicky Ellis

Ireland is in line for a €235million loan from the EU to fund an “ambitious” programme to revamp its electricity infrastructure. Irish utility, the Electricity Supply Board (ESB), will use the European Investment Bank’s (EIB) money to develop smarter and more sustainable electricity networks.

Cash from the EU’s financing institution will make up half of a total €470m investment for the ESB Networks’ programme over the next two years.

Plans include improving the links between the network and renewable energy sources such as wind farms, designing a national smart metering programme as well as the first phase of putting in 1,500 on-street charging points and 2,000 domestic chargers for electric vehicles across Ireland.

Padraig McManus, the Irish utility’s chief executive said: “This new loan will enable ESB to continue its very substantial investment in the electricity network infrastructure in Ireland and help towards developing a more sustainable energy model for the future. ESB has invested more than €6 billion in the electricity networks over the past 10 years, and we now have a very modern and robust network infrastructure.”