SSE, ScottishPower and National Grid to develop electricity super-highway
SSE, ScottishPower and
National Grid have confirmed they are developing ambitious plans
to deliver an underwater super-highway that will see the North Sea become
the hidden powerhouse of Europe.
The electric super-highway will play a vital role in achieving net-zero.
The three power firms were confirmed today as major partners of the UN’s
COP26 climate change event, to be held in Glasgow in 2021.
The Eastern Link will be made up of some of the world’s longest subsea
HVDC cables, with a combined capacity of up to 4 GW. The multi-billion
pound investment is expected to support hundreds of green jobs throughout
construction and operation. The project will be led by SSE, ScottishPower
and National Grid, setting off from two separate points in Scotland; Peterhead
The cables aim to increase the UK’s capacity for transmitting around four
million homes to travel up to 440km from the east of Scotland, a hub for
offshore renewables, down to two points in the north-east of England, Selby
and Hawthorn Point.
The east coast of Scotland is already home to almost 1GW of operational
offshore wind farms with a further 4.4GW in the pipeline and up to 10GW
predicted following the outcome of the next Scottish offshore wind leasing
Survey works along the route have recently commenced with construction
works currently expected to take place from 2024.
Keith Anderson, CEO of ScottishPower said: “COP26 will provide the
perfect opportunity for the UK to showcase its innovation, progress and
leadership in tackling climate change and we are proud to be major partners
in the event.
“We firmly believe the UK can achieve its ambitious Net Zero targets but
it must be done through investment and innovation in essential projects
like the Eastern Link, providing benefits for customers and society in
the long term.
“COP’s success is, in part, thanks to the collaboration of sectors, industries
and countries and we are looking forward to exploring this mammoth opportunity
with SSE and National Grid.”
Alistair Phillips-Davies, Chief Executive of SSE, said: “The development
of the East Coast link is one of the most exciting energy developments
over recent decades and is essential to delivering the UK’s 40GW offshore
wind target by 2030 and critical to our own commitment to build a network
for net zero emissions.
“With the eyes on the UK ahead of COP26 next year, this project clearly
demonstrates how the UK is leading the world in tackling the climate emergency
and supporting thousands of jobs and supply chain opportunities.”
Nicola Shaw, UK Executive Director at National Grid, said: “This project
will help transport enough renewable electricity for around 4.5 million
homes across the UK and will become part of the backbone of the UK’s energy
system. It’s a great example of companies working together on impressive
engineering feats that will help the country hit its net zero carbon target