Irish regulator ComReg announced results of the auction for award of frequencies in the 400 MHz band. These are intended for Smart Grids. The award process resulted in one winning bidder ESB Networks DAC.
The spectrum was offered in two parts:
- 2×3 MHz lot (410-413 MHz/ 420-423 MHz) for the provision of wireless communication for Smart Grids; and
- Ten lots of 2×100 kHz on a technology and service neutral basis. These lots may be used to support Smart Grid, or for a range of other uses including Business Radio type applications.
ESB Networks DAC won one lot in the Part A and ten lots in the Part B. It will pay €1.1m, comprising 320,000 in upfront spectrum access fees and 780,000 in spectrum usage fees which will be paid over the 15-year duration of the licences.
Smart Grids have been identified as a key enabler in the reduction of climate emissions and to reduce the effects of climate change by international bodies such as the United Nations and the International Telecommunications Union, and are referenced in the following Government documents:
- Project Ireland 2040 – National Strategic Outcome 8 of the National Planning Framework promotes a transition to a low carbon energy future and which requires decisions around developing and deploying new technologies such as smart grids;
- The National Mitigation Plan – in which the Department of Communications, Climate Actions and Environment (DCCAE) observes that smart operation of the power system at both transmission and distribution level and energy efficiency will enable maximisation of the existing grid; and
- SEAI Smart Grid Roadmap – which states that by 2050, Smart Grids will see an accumulated reduction in energy related CO2 emissions by 250 million tonnes.
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