Interconnection

Editor's picks

Ofgem and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have published an open letter announcing the next steps in their joint review of the offshore transmission regime. The review will be split into three main workstreams covering “early opportunities”, the “pathway to 2030” and the “enduring regime”, as well as a fourth cross-cutting workstream on multi-purpose interconnectors.
News
Ofgem has granted a request by National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO) to delay its implementation of the Trans European Replacement Reserves Exchange (TERRE) until the beginning of next year. In approving the new timeline, Ofgem warned ESO it needed to improve communication with stakeholders and quickly come up with an implementation plan.
News
A government minister has said a National Grid-backed project to build the world’s longest sub-sea interconnector between Iceland and the UK faces difficulties which will be “extremely difficult” to overcome.
News

Featured

The energy system is evolving, both in how the system is used and in the expectations of those using it. Moreover, the pace of change is accelerating. Together, these trends are shedding light on the importance of grid reliability.
Opinion
Ofgem’s Decarbonisation Action Plan recognises that net zero requires a more holistic regulatory approach – and that it is crucial the costs and benefits of these initiatives fall fairly between different groups of consumers. Sustainability First's Sharon Darcy gives her view.
Opinion
With the UK now just hours away from departing the EU, Utility Week explores what this means for the utilities sector. How will energy collaboration with Europe proceed, and what does this mean for decarbonisation of the grid? Will there be an impact on the efficiency of interconnectors? Will the UK continue to trade in the EU Emissions Trading System? David Blackman discusses these and other issues.
Analysis

Latest in Interconnection

Locational electricity pricing could save £30 billion – or £1,000 per household – by 2035, according to a new study from Energy Systems Catapult and Octopus Energy. The report said the current market arrangements were designed for an energy system dominated by large, centralised generators and “no longer makes sense”, resulting in a “growing tension between the wholesale market and physical reality”.
News
Octopus Energy Group has given financial backing to a project to import solar and wind power from Morocco via the world’s longest subsea interconnectors. Developer Xlinks is planning to build 7GW of solar farms, 3.5GW of wind farm and 5GW/20GWh of battery storage in a patch of desert in the south of Morocco, and import the power generated back to the UK through two 1.8GW interconnectors.
News
Foresight Group has acquired a majority stake in the proposed 750MW MaresConnect interconnector between Great Britain and Ireland for an undisclosed sum. The subsea interconnector will stretch for 245km between Dublin in Ireland and Bodelwyddan in Denbighshire in Wales and is expected to begin operating in 2027.
News
National Grid Ventures has agreed to repay £200 million of excess interconnector revenues ahead of schedule to help bring down energy bills over the next two years. The repayments will cover the IFA2 interconnector to France, the Nemo link to Belgium and the North Sea link to Norway, all of which operate under Ofgem’s Cap and Floor regime.
News
Nicola Medalova, of National Grid Ventures, writes for Utility Week about the vital role of North Sea wind in reducing the influence of Russian gas. She discusses the potential for multi-purpose interconnectors to maximise the deployment of renewable generation and speed up connections.
Opinion
National Grid’s IFA2 interconnector has saved 300,000 tonnes of carbon in its first year, paying off the carbon cost of building it, the network operator has revealed. The 120 mile long 1GW electricity cable, which connects Lee-on-Solent near Portsmouth and Caen in northwest France, was commissioned in January last year. The carbon savings came by importing nuclear energy from France. 
News
The government may need to pump prime investment in the mooted offshore transmission grid to get the project off the ground, according to the former director of networks at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. Dan Monzani told the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee that the development of an offshore grid would bring down costs significantly and could enable wind farms to be built without the support of Contracts for Difference.
News
Renewable generators have been given the green light to begin providing synthetic inertia to the power grid after a “game-changing” modification to the Grid Code came into effect on Monday (14 February). National Grid Electricity System Operator said they will now be able to participate in its stability pathfinder project – its trial of a new grid stability service incorporating inertia, reactive power and short circuit level.
News
One of the backers of a controversial plan for a new interconnector between France and the UK has threatened legal action within weeks against Kwasi Kwarteng’s decision to block the project. Alexander Temerko, an ex-head of Russian oil company Yukos and director of Aquind since 2016, also threatened legal action against trade minister Penny Mordaunt, who has been one of the leaders of the campaign against the cable that would come ashore in Portsmouth in her capacity as a local MP.
News
Business and energy secretary Kwasi Kwarteng has refused planning consent for a controversial electricity interconnector between the UK and France. The decision follows stiff local resistance to the Aquind project, which would see a 2GW high voltage direct current cable come ashore at Eastney beach in Portsmouth before running through the city and out to a substation in Lovedean on the edge of the South Downs National Park.
News
Given its perceived role in unlocking the true potential of the UK’s energy system as it transitions to net zero, the conversation around the Future System Operator no longer centres on if, but when and how. Utility Week gauged the views of smart grid and system operation leads across the energy sector on the roles and responsibilities of the new body and how a functional FSO can be achieved as quickly as possible.
Analysis
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