04. An Enhanced High Voltage Energy Transmission Network

Clawfin, East Ayrshire

An Enhanced High Voltage Energy Transmission Network is needed to facilitate renewable electricity development and its export.  The specific projects required for this network are set out in the Electricity Networks Strategy Group, and will continue to evolve as new opportunities emerge.  Key connections include links to Orkney, Shetland and the Western Isles, and interconnectors to emerging international grid networks.  Improvements to the distribution network are also important to many remote rural areas.  We support the provision of new infrastructure, whilst acknowledging that full consideration of routes and development components will be required at the consenting stage.  The map of national developments provides an indicative picture of key electricity grid upgrades, although these may change in the future.

As part of this national development, we want to see planning enabling development of onshore links to support offshore renewable energy development.  A strategy for the marine grid, connecting with the onshore network, will help to provide greater clarity on the offshore projects required.

Implementation Lead(s): Scottish Power Energy Networks; Scottish and Southern Energy Power Distribution SHE Transmission; Scottish Government

Locations: All Scotland

Further reading:
Scottish Power Energy Networks
Scottish and Southern Energy Power Distribution SHE Transmission
Electricity Networks Strategy Group
Marine Scotland – Offshore Renewable Energy – Planning

Environmental Mitigation: Project level assessment of route options to take into account potential impacts arising from construction and installation as well as long term operational effects. Application of Holford Rules. Further Habitats Regulation Appraisal will be required as projects are planned.

Ongoing Activity and Milestones:
Section 37 consent applications for overhead lines under the Electricity Act 1989 as required.

2015, August 28 – Application approved by Aberdeenshire Council for the Interconnector Converter Station and Cable Connection for the North Connect Project (cable from Scotland to Norway) (ref APP/2015/1121).

The Irish-Scottish Links on Energy Study (ISLES) is a major initiative designed to enable the development of interconnected grid networks to enhance the integration of marine renewable energy between Scotland, Northern Ireland and Ireland. The second phase of this EU funded project led by the Scottish Government entitled ‘Towards Implementation’  concluded in June 2015 . The key outputs can be found online and include;

  • a cross jurisdictional Spatial Plan providing locational marine guidance to potential developers;
  • a recommended regulatory model that outlines principles for arrangements to facilitate efficient coordination of development; and,
  • an ISLES business plan that proposes an overarching governance framework, through which future development might be supported

2015, 21 December – ScottishPower and SHE Transmission announce that Beauly-Denny reinforcement is fully operational, and has already enabled the connection of 80 additional wind, hydro and solar generation developments in the north of Scotland.

2016, 11 March – SSE Transmission announce that a project by Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission (SHE Transmission) and SP Energy Networks to reinforce the electricity network on the Kintyre peninsula in Argyll to Hunterston in North Ayrshire has been completed. As well as increasing security of electricity supply supplies, the new link will also provide new capacity and ensure that renewable energy generated in Kintyre can be transmitted to areas of demand in south and central Scotland and beyond.

Planning authorities to reflect electricity transmission upgrade plans and projects in development plans and, if necessary, supplementary guidance.

Marine Scotland is considering and propose to take forward a Strategic Marine Grid plan.

Following review by Scottish Power Energy Networks of its proposed Dumfries and Galloway Strategic Reinforcement (DGSR) Project, it has identified a need to modernise and increase the capacity of the existing overhead line between Kendoon and Tongland. Whilst the full DGSR is not being progressed a revised scheme ‘Kendoon to Tongland 132kV Reinforcement (KTR) Project’ is being developed by the company.

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