Northern Ireland

EU grant for Islandmagee cave project

Image caption The project is planned for the area around Islandmagee in County Antrim

An energy project near Larne, County Antrim, has obtained more multi-million pound funding from the European Union.

The project, being developed by Gaelectric, will store energy in the form of compressed air in underground caverns created within geological salt deposits on the Islandmagee peninsula.

Financing totalling 8.2m euros (£6.9m) covers the drilling of an appraisal well and detailed studies into the design and commercial structure of the project.

It previously was awarded EU funding of 6.5m euros (£5.4M) in 2015.

The company said the project would provide generation capacity of 330mw for periods of up eight hours duration, enough to meet the electricity needs of more than 200,000 homes.

Gaelectric said there "will be a mixture of direct jobs at the site" and at supply companies.

Its corporate affairs manager Patrick McClughan said: "Over coming months we will be engaging with local businesses to discuss the supply chain opportunities that can be expected from the Larne project."

Gaelectric is a renewable energy company founded in 2004.

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