The move is part of Ireland's Climate Action Plan, that commits to increase offshore wind capacity to 3.5GW and aligns with the country's overall ambition to reach 70% renewable energy by 2030.
The Minister for Housing and Urban Development, Damien English TD, and the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, Richard Bruton TD, announced the seven projects on 19 May.
These include offshore wind projects that either applied for or were granted a lease under the Foreshore Act 1933, or offshore wind projects that are eligible to be processed to receive a valid grid connection offer.
Namely, the projects that have been approved are Oriel Wind Park, Innogy Renewables (2 projects Bray and Kish Banks), Codling Wind Park (2 projects, Codling I and Codling II), Fuinneamh Sceirde Teoranta (Skerd Rocks), and North Irish Sea Array Ltd (North Irish Sea Array).
The announcement of the transition means these projects can continue to work and update a number of aspects, so that they will be in a position to apply under the new marine planning regime, once enacted, which will be introduced by the Marine Planning and Development Management Bill, 2020.
Under this new marine planning regime, these projects will apply for final development consent to An Board Pleanála which will provide further opportunities for public consultation on the individual projects,
...commented Minister English.