Ofgem, regulator of the UK energy industry, is hosting consultations this month in Shetland to gather the public’s views on plans to service the isles’ energy needs through a subsea cable from the Scottish mainland.
Lerwick Power station is reaching the end of its operating life. Ofgem, regulator of the energy industry, asked SSEN, operating as Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution (SHEPD), to undertake a tender for an optimum solution to meet Shetland’s electricity needs from 2020 onwards – one that is modern, efficient and ensures security of supply.
Following consultation in 2014 and competitive tender process, SSEN has confirmed that the recommended solution is a subsea cable link provided by National Grid Shetland Link Ltd, with on island back up generation provided by Aggreko UK Ltd.
The proposed 260km link will run from Dounreay in Caithness to Scalloway on Shetland’s Mainland with a further underground cable to Gremista, near Lerwick, where the back-up generators will be housed. Once operational, it will provide a reliable electricity network supply for Shetland for at least 20 years.
Representatives from Ofgem, SSEN, National Grid and Aggreko will be on hand to answer any questions on the day.
Two events will take place at the Shetland Museum and Archives in Lerwick on August 16. On August 17, consultation will be held at the Yell Leisure Centre from 9am to 11am, while there will also be a meeting at the North Mainland Leisure Centre in Brae on the same day between 2pm and 6pm.
If regulatory approval is granted, contracts are expected to be signed later in 2017 followed by a three-year delivery period before the new energy solution is operational, expected by the end of 2020.