A joint venture, NorthConnect, has been set up between UK, Norwegian and Swedish companies to plan and build an electrical interconnector between UK and Norway.
Vattenfall, Agder Energi, E-CO, Lyse and Scottish and Southern Energy (SSE) will, through NorthConnect, look at the technical and economic viability of developing, building and operating the interconnector, which could allow for an increased use of low-carbon and renewable energy. TIt is expected that the 550-700 km long high voltage direct current (HVDC) interconnector will need to have a capacity of 1.2-2 GW. The aim is to have NorthConnect in operation before 2020.
SSE CEO Ian Marchant, comments: “Increasing interconnection between networks is likely to be an important feature of the electricity industry in Europe as the drive to maximise supplies of secure, low-carbon sources of energy increases over the next two decades.Scotland and Norway have rich and diverse natural resources from which to produce large amounts of electricity, and an interconnector could allow the potential of those complementary resources to be fulfilled by meeting the needs of customers across North West Europe.” This agreement might be beginning of the North Sea Supergrid initiated by the 9 nations around the North Sea. A multinational MoU was signed in December.
INTPOW believes that the creation of a Supergrid is inevitable. It will most likely consist of a number of successive initiatives such as the Norway-UK link announced yesterday. Grid is essential to the development of offshore wind in the North sea and a grid structure is believed to facilitate a better balancing of the power system in North Europe.