Nature-Inclusive Design Pilots






With the government of Ireland introducing a biodiversity emergency in 2019, EirGrid has committed to implement nature-inclusive design across their infrastructure. This includes pilot projects on restoration, extensive biodiversity monitoring, and measures to protect birds near powerlines. The projects aim to avoid or reduce negative effects of electricity transmission infrastructure on the environment.

EirGrid is funding an evidence-based approach to biodiversity enhancement at the Portan site during a three year pilot project. In 2019, they commenced a series of nature restoration projects starting with the East West Interconnector (EWIC) Biodiversity Project, in collaboration with Hitachi Energy. After three years, they have observed positive results.


  • Sowing native-grown yellow rattle, and a new meadow management regime involving two cuts and use of a ‘chain harrow’ to favour wildflowers over grasses;
  • Native woodland plants appearing in existing parkland after stopping herbicide usage;
  • Successful fledging of blue tits from the bird’s nest box.

About the project

In 2019, the pilot project conducted on the East West Interconnector (EWIC) focused on altering mowing regimes, creating more wildflower meadows & planting native orchards & woodlands. In 2022, this was followed by a cohesive programme for nature inclusive design pilots. The projects work to make renewable energy transmission greener with a proactive approach to nature conservation. Nature Inclusive Design projects are further informed by ‘Before And After’ monitoring surveys, to monitor success, and take remedial action if required.

RGI gratefully acknowledges the EU LIFE funding support:

EU LIFE funding support Logo

Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the LIFE Programme. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.