Planning and Environmental
Project-CAES Larne, NI is a strategically important project with wide ranging and important benefits for the operation of the electricity transmission system in Northern Ireland.
Project-CAES Larne, NI comprises the Main Project, with the CAES Station, geological caverns and marine and brine water pipelines, and its Regional Service Connections for electricity and natural gas.
The Project has been given Strategic Planning Status since 2011. The Project Team engaged in the Pre-Application Discussion (PAD) process with Strategic Planning Division and a range of statutory consultees including NIEA and DOE Marine Division. 7 PAD meetings in total took place which allowed for early engagement and meaningful pre application discussions which improved the quality of the planning submission. As part of its Community and Stakeholder Engagement Strategy, the Project Team is also consulting with a wide range of consultees and the local community in Larne.
Project of Common Interest
Project – CAES Larne, NI has been designated a Project of Common Interest under the EU’s trans-European energy infrastructure (TEN-E) programme. For a project to be included in the PCI list, it must have significant benefits for at least two Member States; contribute to market integration and further competition; enhance security of supply, and reduce CO2 emissions.
National Competent Authority
The guidelines require each country to identify a body that is responsible for ensuring the requirements of the TEN-E Regulation are fulfilled. This is known as the National Competent Authority. In the case of the Project-CAES Larne, NI this is the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC). DECC has produced guidance, known as the Manual of Procedures, which sets out practical advice for developers and the general public.
Further information and a copy of the Manual of Procedures can be found here.
Environmental Impact Assessment
An Environmental Impact Assessment has been carried out for the Project. This comprises a range of studies which consider the potential of any likely significant effects on the environment arising from the proposed development; and specify project design or other measures to eliminate or mitigate these impacts to within acceptable levels. An Environmental Statement (ES) has been submitted with the planning application for Project-CAES Larne, NI to the Strategic Planning Division.