EirGrid’s Grid25 infrastructure investment programme will sustain nearly 3,000 jobs a year up to 2025, according to a new study by Indecon International Economic Consultants.
The study examines the wider economic benefits of the Grid25 programme, which involves an estimated E3.2 billion of investment expenditure on a wide range of electricity transmission projects in the period to 2025. Launched in 2008, Grid25 is designed to accommodate new electricity demand and generation, as well as meeting Ireland’s renewable energy targets.
As part of the study, Indecon researched the economic impact of the investment expenditure. It found that, due to direct, indirect, and induced impacts of the investment spending, the programme is likely to support an additional 2,896 jobs over the 15-year period of the investment plan.
Alan Gray, managing partner of Indecon, confirmed that the investment will have a direct and indirect impact on economic output and employment. He added: “However, probably the most important economic benefit of Grid25 is not the expenditure or direct employment impacts, but the avoidance of the costs of a deficient network which could negatively impact on investor confidence.”
The study presents new survey evidence of the potential of Grid25 to influence investors’ perceptions of Ireland. A large majority, 83pc, of leading company survey respondents judged that additional available capacity on the electricity transmission grid was important or very important to their expansion plans. These organisations accounted for over 24,000 employees in Ireland and over 950,000 worldwide.
The study also found that a lack of grid development could limit investment, with hi-tech multinationals requiring circa 50 megawatts (MW) additional capacity in order to consider a major investment. This would represent the peak electricity demand of a town the size of Mullingar. Source: Business World