Appeal lodged against Athenry energy storage battery park

Appeal lodged against Athenry energy storage battery park

A decision to grant permission for a battery energy storage facility in Athenry has been appeal to An Bord Pleanála.

Engie Developments Ireland Limited received planning permission from the county council in June for a 100MW Battery Energy Storage Facility to supply electricity to the national grid.

The battery park at Barrettspark, Athenry will consist of up to 34 metal containers which will store electricity up to 100MW in sealed battery cells with entrances, fire suppression systems, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning.

The developer said that facilities like this are needed to help with the inconsistent nature of renewable energy.

The intermittent nature of solar and wind power “creates issues for the electricity network operators in balancing the demand from the consumer with the ability to generate electricity on demand.”

“Battery systems are a proven solution, restoring network harmony and allowing further renewable energy deployment in the future”.

The site chosen for this project is currently agricultural land, and would be connected to the existing Cashla ESB substation to absorb electricity from, and deliver it back to, the national grid.

The site would be connected to the regional road R339 by the local access road L7109 in the Barrettspark area.

Several submissions were made to the county council concerned about road safety issues connected to construction traffic, in particular at the junction of the R339 and L7109.

As a condition of planning approval the developer was required to pay €30,612.40 to the county council for the provision of public utilities.

An appeal against the decision to grant permission was made to the higher planning authority on July 16.

The appeal stated that the main linkage junction would pose a traffic hazard due to limited sightlines, arguing that the methodology of the traffic and transport assessment carried out for this application was flawed.

This case is due to be decided by An Bord Pleanála by November 18.

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