National Grid and Statnett have announced the start of the construction phase of a €2bn (£1.5bn) subsea interconnector project between the UK and Norway.
At a record-breaking length of 730km, the subsea cable will run between Blyth in Northumberland and Kvilldal in Rogaland, Norway.
It has a planned capacity of 1400MW and converter stations at each side will connect the cable to the grid.
Statnett chief executive Auke Lont said: “Not only is this a technically impressive project where we will set a new world record, it is also an important contribution to the increase of renewable energy production on both sides, and thereby an essential part of the future electricity system.”
Initial work will be on planning and site preparation. The actual construction is expected to begin in 2017/18 and completed in 2019 with the project operational by 2020.
UK energy secretary Ed Davey said: “Coming after the recent confirmation of the Nemo interconnector project with Belgium, I am proud we are now seeing a huge increase in Britain’s energy options, and the prospect of a real single energy market and energy supergrid in Europe.”