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MPs claim European supergrid would bring reliable energy and jobs

A European energy “supergrid” would allow the National Grid to balance supply and demand more effectively and could create many thousands of jobs despite its high cost, according to a government report.

The Commons Energy and Climate Change Select Committee’s European Supergrid report said that using foreign electricity sources to help balance supply and demand would become increasingly necessary as fossil fuel generation is phased out in favour of more intermittent renewable energy sources.

A supergrid could be very costly to build, but would offer a 25% capital cost saving on connecting each new offshore wind or marine energy farm compared to connecting each site individually, the report said. It could also create tens of thousands of new jobs in the offshore renewable industry, said the select committee. 

“We potentially have enough wind, wave and tidal energy to … transform the country from a net energy importer to a net energy exporter,” said Energy and Climate Change Select Committee chair Tim Yeo.

Supergrid

European supergrid

Readers' comments (3)

  • Yet more nonsense! Where are the experienced professional engineer MP's who can sit on these MP's Committees and feed in some real life inputs and value for money engineering.
    Studies have already shown that winter periods of maximum power demand too often coincide with extended periods of no/low wind across the whole Western European Area, i.e. the area of the super-grid in Western Europe. That means everyone will want what unused capacity is available. This identifies that each country needs to provide installed capacity of 100% available power generation systems to meet its own local maximum power demand.
    The idea of Africa being part of a safe and secure power generation system for the UK is quite laughable!
    Overall the cost of this pipe dream will be astronomic. The UK's contribution would be far better invested now on emergency R&D programmes to discover and develop alternative power generation systems providing electricity under our full control, much cheaper, 100% available, and far more local to areas of maximum power demand. Then we'll be back in the fore front of Power Generation with cheaper costs, more meaningful jobs and massive export capability - the complete opposite to Wind Farms

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  • I fuuly agree with Peter Wilson, frankly the select committee is a farce. Only recently we were told that grids and super grids were things of the past. We would all be generating our own power in our back yards. It would be laughable if it were not so serious.

    D Limbert (F)

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  • Of course, tidal barriers engineered both for protection against flooding from the rising sea, and for generating electricity as the tide changes twice each day, do give output at known times regularly twice each day, do not polute nor emit GHG's.

    The sea flora at the existing French tidal generating station improved the wa\ter ecology, and that in the Seven estuary would also improve by reduced speed of the tides and their suspended solids, thereby allowing more light to sustain sea-estuary life.

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