Bord na Móna’s Edenderry power station to be connected to national gas network

Gas Networks Ireland plans to make a significant investment in gas infrastructure as it looks to connect Bord na Móna’s Edenderry power station to the national gas network.

This new connection is set to enable the integration of both natural gas and renewable gas – including biomethane and green hydrogen – into the fuel mix at the facility located in Co Offaly.

The Edenderry location supports the national energy grid in times of high demand and currently provides 116MW of electricity to help balance the intermittency of supply from other energy sources in Ireland.

The transmission connection is expected to contribute a 40pc reduction in carbon dioxide emissions when the investment in the site is completed, according to Gas Networks Ireland.

The project is currently in its preliminary planning and development phase, while the expected value of the investment has not been disclosed. Construction is expected to begin in 2027.

The investment will involve the construction of a steel transmission pipeline which is expected to be around 22km in length.

The pipeline is anticipated to be fully operational in 2029 and will first facilitate the transmission of natural gas, with a shift to renewable gases over time.

Gas Networks Ireland said it intends to engage with local communities and host public information evenings over the coming weeks to share more details about the project.

Bord na Móna ended the use of peat to fuel the Edenderry plant last December, with the Co Offaly location the last of the country’s peat-burning power stations to close or switch to alternative fuel sources.

“The gas network can be adapted to transport zero-carbon gases, such as green hydrogen,” Gas Networks Ireland’s director of assets and infrastructure Brian Sheehan said.

“It has already transformed once, from carrying town gas to natural gas over 40 years ago, and more recently adapted to biomethane when it was first introduced onto the Irish network in 2019,” he added.

Gas Networks Ireland operates and maintains Ireland’s national gas network, which spans 14,725km. There are over 720,000 gas customers across the country.

Bord na Móna’s head of renewable energy John Reilly said that existing diesel generation assets located at the site play a role in supplying electricity to the national grid when solar and wind energy availability is limited.

“This development will ensure these generation assets are operating even more sustainably, as one of the largest on-demand renewable electricity generators in Ireland,” Mr Reilly said.

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