An Bord Pleanála has given the go ahead for a planning application to be made for a new back-up power station between Loughrea and Portumna.
The Bord ruled that a new open cycle gas turbine plant at the Tynagh Power Station complex would not constitute a Strategic Infrastructure Development.
This means that a planning application for the power plant can be made in the first instance to Galway County Council.
Forestdream and EP Energy Developments intend to build a natural gas fueled turbine plant, which would operate as a “peaking plant” to back up the national grid.
It would be designed to run for short periods of time when not enough electricity is being generated by renewable sources, in order to give a boost to the existing network.
The new gas turbine plant will have a maximum output of just under 300MW, bringing it below the threshold that would automatically make it a Strategic Infrastructure Development.
Though it is being built at the same location as the existing Tynagh Power Station, during the pre-application consultation, it was argued that the output two should not be considered cumulatively, as the new plant will be entirely independent.
The applicants stated in their meeting with An Bord Pleanála that they intend to submit a planning application to the county council in October 2021.