Project Type: Transmission reinforcement
Location: Western Isles, Highland

Contact Details

Liaison Manager

Neil Anderson
Title: Community Team Manager
Telephone: 01738 516529
Mobile: 07500 912506
Address: Inveralmond House, 200 Dunkeld Road, Perth, PH1 3AQ

Land Manager

Norman MacAskill
Title: Wayleaves Officer
Mobile: 07584 313500
Address: 10 Henderson Road, Inverness, IV1 1SN
Status: Early Development

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Project overview

We are proposing to construct a High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) connection between the island of Lewis and the Scottish mainland. The Western Isles Connection will be used to transmit electricity generated by renewable developments on the Western Isles to areas of demand around our towns and cities.

 

Why is the project required?

As the transmission licence holder in the north of Scotland we have a duty under Section 9 of the Electricity Act 1989 to facilitate competition in the generation and supply of electricity. We have obligations to offer non-discriminatory terms for connection to the transmission system, both for new generation and for new sources of electricity demand.

The aim of the project is to enable renewable energy to connect to our transmission network. Under our Network Operators Licence this connection should be efficient, co-ordinated and economic, whilst having the least possible impact on the environment.

Project elements

The project is made up of four main elements:

  • A HVDC Converter and associated Alternating Current (AC) substation at Arnish Point, Stornoway
  • A HVDC Converter and associated AC substation within the existing Beauly Substation footprint
  • A HVDC underground cable between Beauly Substation and Dundonnell, on the west coast
  • A HVDC subsea cable between Arnish Point and the land fall at Dundonnell

The data in this map is provided for indicative purposes only and may be subject to change. Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission plc do not accept responsibility for its accuracy, completeness or validity. The data should not be copied, reproduced or utilised externally without permission.

Who is Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks?

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks is the trading name of Scottish and Southern Energy Power Distribution Limited, Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission plc, Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution plc and Southern Electric Power Distribution plc.

How are Transmission network upgrades paid for?

Investments in projects are made by SHE Transmission plc. Electricity transmission companies are authorised to recover the costs of such investments through 'use of system' charges which are levied by National Grid Electricity Transmission plc on generators and suppliers of electricity. Suppliers recover their costs from all electricity customers. In order to protect the interests of customers, the transmission companies have to demonstrate to the energy regulator, Ofgem (Office for Gas and Electricity Markets) that proposed investments are necessary, are efficient and are economical so that the charges which are ultimately levied on all electricity customers are justified.
This means SHE Transmission is subject to a funding mechanism established by Parliament and regulated by Ofgem. Cross subsidies between different businesses in the SSE group is not permitted.

How are our proposals scrutinised?

The Scottish Ministers are responsible for determination of applications submitted under Section 37 of the Electricity Act 1989. Both statutory consultees and members of the public have the right to submit their representations on the application. All representations will be considered by Scottish Ministers in their determination of the application.
The Office for Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem), as the regulator, has to approve all investment so project proposals are developed under license conditions.
Preferred route corridors chosen will comply with revised ‘Holford Rules’ which are the recognised industry approach to routeing overhead lines amended to reflect Scottish circumstances.

How and to what extent are electricity consumers' interests considered?

We are regulated by the Office for Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem), the regulator responsible for representing consumers' interests. Electricity consumer interests are therefore one of our key drivers and this is enshrined in our statutory duties under the Electricity Act.
In particular we have a statutory duty to develop, maintain and operate an efficient, economic and co-ordinated transmission system. Since the costs of these projects will ultimately be paid for by electricity consumers, we have a responsibility to take cost into account with due weighting in a comparison against other important factors.

What is the transmission network?

It’s the highest voltage electricity network in the UK – the ‘motorway network’ of the energy world. It transmits large quantities of electricity over long distances via wires carried on a system of mainly metal towers (pylons) and large substations. Transmission voltages in Scotland are 132kV, 275kV and 400kV. Larger generation schemes usually connect to the Transmission system.

The lower voltage parts of the system are called distribution networks. In Scotland, these local networks operate below 132kV whereas in England the distribution network includes 132kV. 

Consultation on treatment of non-mainland GB onshore wind projects

We have today responded to the UK Government consultation on treatment of non-mainland GB onshore wind projects, to read our response please go to the ‘Project documentation’ section of the project website

Project Tender Update

Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission is currently undertaking a competitive tender exercise for the whole of the project and is working towards identifying a preferred Principal Contractor by the end of March 2017 with the overall project delivery currently anticipated to be by the end of September 2021.

Document downloads

Consultation on treatment of non-mainland GB onshore wind projects (Consultation Report)

Related Projects: Orkney, Western Isles, Shetland

File Type: pdf
Published: 31 Jan 2017
Subsea cable route Grabhair to Arnish
1457

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Overhead line route
1455

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Stornoway substation site plan
1456

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Needs case stakeholder summary
1454

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Lewis infrastructure route options
1453

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Lewis infrastructure leaflet
1451

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Lewis infrastructure event information
1452

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Consultation boards
1449

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Balblair footpath drawings
1448

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Arnish point consultation boards
1445

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016
Altyre footpath drawings
1447

Related Projects: Western Isles

File Type: pdf
Published: 18 Aug 2016

Local People

Neil Anderson
  • Title: Community Team Manager
  • Email: neil.anderson@sse.com
  • Telephone: 01738 516529
  • Mobile: 07500 912506
  • Address: Inveralmond House, 200 Dunkeld Road, Perth, PH1 3AQ
Norman MacAskill
  • Title: Wayleaves Officer
  • Email: norman.macaskill@sse.com
  • Mobile: 07584 313500
  • Address: 10 Henderson Road, Inverness, IV1 1SN

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