The network development plans and statements provide the CRU with accurate data that allows us to deliver our security of supply reporting and monitoring obligations, for both electricity and gas.

Network Development Plans

To help plan and develop energy networks for the future, both Eirgrid and Gas Networks Ireland produce ten year network development plans.

The network development plans and statements are future-looking documents that allow both EirGrid and Gas Networks Ireland to assess the energy networks in Ireland to, among other things, ensure the lights stay on, and the gas continues to flow.

EirGrid also produces a ten-year Generation Capacity Statement and a ten-year All-Island Transmission Forecast Statement.

The network development plans and statements provide the CRU with accurate data that allows us to deliver our security of supply reporting and monitoring obligations, for both electricity and gas.

In addition, as Ireland transitions itself to a low-carbon economy, the energy networks in Ireland will face many challenges and must be planned and developed to make the transition as smooth as possible.

As the amount of electricity generated from wind increases, the electricity network must be able to handle the unpredictability of wind while still operating in a secure manner. The increased use of wind energy also has an impact on Ireland’s gas network.

To help overcome these challenges, there are a number of innovative initiatives in place, such as the DS3 Programme, Biomethane injection and the use of compressed natural gas vehicles being developed.

Future Statements and Plans


While EirGrid lead the DS3 programme, the CRU oversees and supports the implementation of the Programme.

EirGrid has statutory responsibilities in Ireland in relation to the economic purchase of services necessary to support the secure operation of the system; these services are known as 'ancillary services'.

Ancillary services can be described as products, other than energy, that are required to ensure the secure operation of the transmission system. EirGrid had ancillary services contracts in place with a number of generators. In total seven services were purchased by EirGrid.

The ancillary services framework has been revised through the DS3 Programme. The aim of the DS3 programme is to meet the challenges of operating the electricity system in a secure manner while achieving renewable electricity targets.

It is expected the DS3 Programme will:

  • Improve the safety and stability of the electricity system and improve security of supply;
  • Reduce electricity costs for consumers;
  • Encourage investment in the technologies and generators that provide the most value to the system
  • Facilitate Ireland and Northern Ireland achieving their renewables targets

More information on the DS3 Programme


Electric Vehicles

Integration of the energy and transport sectors is expected to increase over the coming decades through the integration of electric vehicles and alternative fuels into the transport sector. This move is expected to be particularly strong in Europe due to the leading role the EU has taken in relation to areas such as energy efficiency, promotion of renewable energy and climate change.


Biomethane is a renewable gas that can be injected into the natural gas grid. The injection of biomethane has the potential to increase security of supply and decrease carbon emissions and the government has set a target for biomethane by 2030.

The CRU recognises these potential benefits of biomethane injection. Currently biomethane is being injected onto the network at one point. The CRU introduced changed to the market rules to facilitate this and will continue to review policy as the biomethane market continues to develop.

Compressed Natural Gas (CNG)

CNG is an alternative fuel which is currently funded under the Innovation Fund. The Innovation Fund is supporting a project called the Causeway Study, under which a network of CNG stations is being delivered. The Causeway project is co-funded by the European Union’s Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). CEF is a transport and infrastructure program within the European Commission, which focuses on sustainable, multi-modal transport across European key corridors.

Projects of Common Interest (PCI)

The CRU provides assessments of Projects of Common Interest's feasibility, maturity and impact, where relevant to Ireland.

Projects of Common Interest are infrastructure projects which will further the sustainability, resilience and integration of the EU’s internal energy market. A list of PCIs, has been drawn up by the European Commission under EU Regulation 347/2013 (Guidelines for trans-European energy infrastructure).

The PCI list is developed every two years and is derived from submissions from project promoters to the EU Commission.