Plans have been lodged for a 293 MW gas turbine power plant at Kilshane, Finglas in north Dublin in a back-up plan aimed at avoiding potential power cuts.

Against the background of mounting fears over the country's energy security, Kilshane Energy Ltd has lodged the plans with Fingal County Council for the Flexible Peaking Plant at Kildshane Rd, Kilshane.

A Flexible Peaking plant is a gas turbine power generation station "which will run for periods of time when there is insufficient electricity being generated from renewable technologies to meet the country’s energy production needs".

Consultants for the project, CWPA Planning and Architecture also state that such Flexible Peaking plants are needed to help overcome the challenges of increasingly frequent system alerts concerning capacity shortfalls in the country’s power generation system.

The planning consultants state that these plants "are crucial to avoid power outages and ensuring the security of electricity supply in a grid with increased renewable sources of energy."

The consultants add that the "the proposed development will act as a reliable source of back-up generation when the system margins are tight".

The planning documents say that Eirgrid has awarded a 10 year contract to the proposed Kilshane Flexible Peaking Plant to supply power to the grid from 2024.

CWPA Planning and Architecture claim that "there is now a clear consensus across Government and industry that there is an urgent need to develop additional flexible gas fired power stations as the principal source of dispatchable generation supporting viable renewable energy sources such as wind and solar".

The scheme is to include the construction of one gas turbine and a 28 metre high exhaust stack and a two storey administration building.

Huntstown Power Station is located on lands to the immediate south of the subject site

Planning documentation lodged with the application state that the construction of the facility will take two years and five months.

An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) lodged with the scheme states that it is anticipated that the project headcount will peak at 200-250 jobs.

CWPA Planning and Architecture have said that the need for the Flexible Peaking Plant "is driven by the Government's plan to decarbonise Ireland’s electricity generation system, and the urgent need to address the security of electricity supply challenges associated with the transition which are leading to shortfalls in electricity generation capacity".

The planning document states that "by displacing higher emitting units, the Kilshane GT is expected to provide a small reduction in the level of carbon emissions".

A decision is due on the application in November.