Frequently asked questions

What towns will benefit from natural gas under the Gas to the West project?
The licence awarded by the Utility Regulator to Mutual Energy & SGN will enable the benefits of natural gas to be brought to the towns of Coalisland, Cookstown, Derrylin, Dungannon, Enniskillen, Magherafelt, Omagh and Strabane.

Are there plans for other towns/villages to get gas at a later stage?
When the initial eight towns (see above) have been connected, the focus will then be on extending the low pressure (distribution) network within each town and examining the economies of further extensions to smaller communities/settlements that lie close to suitable connection points.

When is gas due to be available to homes and businesses?
The first gas was flowing in Strabane early in 2017 with the first industrial customer, LacPatrick Dairies in Artigarvan, connected in February 2017. The first domestic customers were connected from August 2017 onwards. Work is ongoing to extend the distribution network within the town to enable more homes and businesses to have access to natural gas. Gas is expected to reach the ‘town gates’ of the other seven towns from Q4 2018. Within each of the towns, we are currently developing more detailed design to include the phasing of the work required to bring gas to specific areas. For updates on when your individual home or business premises is expected to be connected, contact your SGN Natural Gas customer representative on 0800 975 7774 or email info@sgnnaturalgas.co.uk

How do I get a gas connection/supply?
Check natural gas availability by calling 0800 975 7774 or email info@SGNNaturalGas.co.uk. You will simply need to provide your, name, address and a telephone number. Once you have confirmed natural gas is available to your property you can request an appointment with an SGN Natural Gas advisor. Our specialist will visit your property to carry out a quick survey and determine the best location for your gas meter.

How much will a gas connection cost?
SGN Natural Gas will provide a quotation based on each individual property. If you are interested in getting connected to natural gas please call 0800 975 7774 or email info@sgnnaturalgas.co.uk, a customer representative will be happy to help you. For further information please click on our Connections Policy approved by the Utility Regulator.

How much will it cost to convert from oil fired central heating to gas?
This will depend on a number of factors, including size and type of premises, type of boiler chosen etc. so will be best discussed with your local installer for a customised quotation.

Who can I contact to install gas appliances in my property?
A list of accredited installers in your local area is available from Gas Safe Register at www.gassaferegister.co.uk or by calling 0800 408 5500. If you have hearing difficulties you can use the text phone service on 0800 408 0606 or email enquiries@gassaferegister.co.uk

Will it be possible to have a pay as you go meter and will this mean gas costs more per unit?
Any household can apply to have a pay as you go meter installed, making it easier to budget by using pre-paid cards. With a constant supply of natural gas distributed directly to the property, it offers peace of mind to the household knowing they will not run out of fuel, and removes the worry of having to pay for fuel upfront.

How do I find out which gas suppliers are active in my area?
Domestic customers will automatically commence supply with the network ‘Commissioning Supplier’, SSE Airtricity. Once the customer is connected they may change their Supplier after 15 days by contacting an alternative supplier, provided one is available. Please note that a minimum ‘switching period’ may apply and your gas supplier will be able to provide advice on this. Your SGN Natural Gas advisor will be able to advise which suppliers are active in your area.
Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SME) nominate a supplier of choice who will commence their supply once their meter is commissioned. Large Industrial and commercial customers will need to register with their chosen supplier in advance of their meter being installed. The gas suppliers serving the commercial market are: SSE Airtricity, Electric Ireland, firmus energy, Flogas Natural Gas Ltd and Go Power.

Will there be ‘promotional offers’ encouraging people and businesses to convert to gas?
It is expected that gas suppliers will have a range of packages and offers available however this is beyond the control of Mutual Energy and SGN as project developers and would be determined as part of the overall marketing strategy by individual suppliers. Government sponsored schemes which aim to improve energy efficiency may be available to support conversion to natural gas (e.g. the Northern Ireland Sustainable Energy Programme) but this will depend on government policy at the time. As gas arrives in your area, keep an eye on the local press and media for details of any special incentives that may be available.

What are the benefits of natural gas for homes and businesses?
Natural gas is the cleanest fossil fuel with the least environmental impact – a switch from oil can lower carbon emissions by more than 20 per cent. With continuity of supply, the worry of running out and being left without heat and/or hot water is no longer an issue. Natural gas is versatile in its application, you can even replace your electric tumble dryer for a gas fired version that will deliver savings on the running cost. It is convenient and controllable and as well as all of the above it also offers the opportunity to save you money versus your existing fuels. In many cases, access to natural gas can be a pre-requisite for other industrial investment.
For further details on the benefits of natural gas as a fuel choice, visit the SGN Natural Gas website.

How much disruption will the project cause?
Gas to the West is a major infrastructure project and, unfortunately, some disruption is inevitable with a project of this scale. The project team and our contractors will be doing everything possible to minimise the impact the project will have on people’s daily lives during the construction phase, and will be working closely with Transport NI, other utility companies and other agencies to co-ordinate our works.
In line with best practice, we will ensure our contractors give as much warning of future works as possible to any residents, businesses and road users / commuters. For the most up to date information on current roadworks, visit the SGN Natural Gas website.

Will local companies be able to benefit from construction and other contracts?
Mutual Energy and SGN recognise that we have a significant role to play in contributing to the economic well-being and sustainable development of the communities we operate within. We are therefore committed to demonstrating exemplary levels of engagement with local suppliers. We want to be the best in Northern Ireland at engaging with local businesses and SME communities.
All supplier and tender opportunities will be advertised on the Gas to the West supplier page on our website and, where appropriate, advertised in the local press. This site will facilitate trade and engagement between SGN and local suppliers and service providers. It will provide a platform for us to promote opportunities originating in the region, and will give local suppliers the chance to get involved in this major project.
We have developed a contractor portal on the SGN Natural Gas website and we recommend interested companies visit this to register their interest and receive updates about opportunities available

How many jobs will the project support during construction and on completion?
The investment associated with Gas to the West is expected to support around 200 jobs during the construction phase. Thereafter the new gas infrastructure will sustain a significant number of ongoing jobs for installation sub-contractors and other related functions..

How can you ensure local people benefit from these job opportunities?
Our contractors and subcontractors will be required to ensure all job opportunities are advertised in the local area and are open to local people, subject to having the necessary qualifications and experience.

News

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Dates announced for public information sessions on Gas to the West
12th February 2018

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2017: A busy year for Gas to the West
20th December 2017

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9th edition of Gas to the West newsletter published
18th December 2017

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8th edition of Gas to the West newsletter published
3rd October 2017

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Gas to the West Stakeholders’ Meeting Dungannon - video
20th June 2017

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Gas to the West - Next Steps
15th June 2017

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Presentation at the Gas to the West Construction Phase launch, 14 June 2017
15th June 2017

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7th edition of Gas to the West newsletter published
14th June 2017

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6th edition of Gas to the West newsletter published
16th February 2017

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‘Gas to the West’ project reaches first major milestone
6th February 2017

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5th edition of Gas to the West newsletter published
25th October 2016

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PRESS RELEASE: Gas to the West project reaches important milestone
21st October 2016

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4th edition of Gas to the West newsletter published
6th June 2016

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3rd edition of Gas to the West project newsletter published
24th March 2016

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Dates announced for 2nd phase of Pre Application Community Consultation (PACC)
7th March 2016

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2nd edition of GTTW newsletter published
23rd December 2015

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Delivery Underway in Strabane
12th November 2015

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1st edition of GTTW newsletter published
19th October 2015

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VIDEO - Public information event underway in Enniskillen – come along and meet the team!
8th October 2015

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Dates announced for public information events
24th September 2015

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Minister formally ‘launches’ GTTW at public event in Enniskillen
4th March 2015

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Utility Regulator publishes GTTW final decision paper and licences
11th February 2015

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Utility Regulator decides on preferred applicant for GTTW
18th December 2014

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MEL and SGN announced as preferred applicants in GTTW competition
12th August 2014

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High pressure operational business plan published
12th August 2014

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Low pressure operational business plan published
12th August 2014

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Gas to the West licence application process launched
6th February 2014