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Supergrid cable cash

A project that will strengthen the security of the UK’s electricity network via a 260km “submarine” cable link with the Netherlands has received a cash boost, enabling construction to continue in the new year.

The BritNed Interconnector project has received a £271M loan from the European Investment Bank, which will pave the way for the new link to be up and running for commercial use in early 2011.

The high-voltage cable link will run between the Isle of Grain in Kent and Maasvlakte near Rotterdam, providing 1,000MW of electricity to both countries in a bid to bolster electricity networks and boost competition within European markets.

National Grid’s director for the BritNed project, Bill Russell, said: “This is a key business for National Grid which will help to enhance security of supply in the UK and facilitate further competition. Work is already well under way and we look forward to seeing the benefits it will bring to Europe.”

The finance package will meet half the €600M cost of constructing the BritNed Interconnector, a joint enterprise between National Grid and TenneT.

Readers' comments (4)

  • Luke O'Rafferty

    How does a cable provide 1,000MW to both countries? Is there a secret power station somewhere under the sea?

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  • The cable does not generate power; it connects two discrete networks and allows up to 1000MW to flow in either direction. The reason this is economically viable is that the UK and Netherlands have different daily power usage patterns- i.e. the peaks and troughs are at different times. Hence this type of cross system link can transfer energy in either direction, when the cost differential makes it economic to do so. Please see the weblink for more on these links:

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  • Haven't BAM Nuttall been on site at the Isle of Grain for months? and aren't they just starting the Ireland connection at Deeside?

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  • I have heard this story before. The UK to France link was designed to move electricty both ways. How much have sold to France? A tad above FA I would guess. If this is just a way to export electricity to the UK why not say and let those who benifit pay. As for the 1000MW it sounds like a deciibel point error to me.

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