UK plans new 2 GW interconnector to ensure electricity transmission network is fit for future

A geophysical survey is currently underway at a new proposed HVDC interconnector in the UK that will reinforce the electricity network between Suffolk and Kent, contributing to the UK’s 2050 net-zero goal.

The 2 GW Sea Link, developed by National Grid Electricity Transmission (NGET), will be approximately 145 kilometers long and predominantly offshore. It is one of several projects that form part of The UK Great Grid Upgrade, the largest overhaul of the grid in generations.

The geophysical survey work is carried out by Next Geosolutions using survey vessels Shore Presence and Shore Possibility in offshore areas and coastal sea waters between Aldeburgh, Suffolk, and Pegwell Bay, Ramsgate, Kent.

Activities started on November 4, 2023, and are expected to be completed this month.

The National Grid said it had recently finished its statutory consultation, which took place between October and December 2023, and is now considering all the submitted feedback.

NGET is set to submit an application to the Planning Inspectorate in the third quarter of this year after which there will be 28 days to review the application and decide whether or not to accept it for examination.

Construction is expected to start in 2026 and be completed around 2030 to make sure the link is in place and connected to the rest of the network by the end of 2030. Some reinstatement and landscaping works would continue into 2031.

To remind, the UK Government has set out a commitment to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. Alongside NGET’s proposals for Sea Link, there are two other electricity link projects being proposed in the Suffolk area: National Grid Ventures’ (NGV) LionLink and Nautilus projects.

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