SSEN Transmission welcomes ‘Beyond 2030’ investment plan for future energy system


SSEN Transmission, part of leading electricity infrastructure company SSE, welcomes today’s publication by National Grid ESO (the ESO) of its ‘Beyond 2030’ report. 

Today’s publication builds on the ESO’s ‘Pathway to 2030’ Holistic Network Design from 2022 which established the blueprint for the electricity transmission network infrastructure required to enable the UK Government’s 2030 50GW offshore wind target, which included around 11GW of ScotWind generation.

The ‘Beyond 2030’ plan will connect another tranche of ScotWind whilst also setting out options to deliver the remainder.  It will also enable the connection of other low carbon technologies, further supporting the country’s transition to net zero and helping deliver energy security through the deployment of homegrown, low carbon electricity generation.

For the north of Scotland, the ESO’s plan confirms the need for a number of projects to proceed now for delivery by 2035, which combined represent a potential estimated investment of over £5bn for SSEN Transmission.

These are:

ESO code


Shetland Hub

A second High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) subsea link from Shetland, connecting to Coachford (Blackhillock 2) substation


A new single 400kV circuit between New Deer and Greens (New Deer 2) substations


A new 400kV double circuit between Dounreay, Thurso and Banniskirk (Spittal 2), with new 400kV substations at Dounreay and Thurso


Rebuild the existing Blackhillock-Kintore 275kV double circuit to 400kV with a new 400kV substation required along its route


Increase the capacity of the planned Peterhead to Longside (Peterhead 2) 400kV double circuit with a higher capacity 400kV double circuit; upgrade the existing Peterhead-Persley-Kintore 275kV double circuit to 400kV including a new substation along its route; and install a higher capacity conductor on sections of the existing Kintore-Alyth-Kincardine 400kV double circuit


Upgrade a short section of the existing Errochty to Clunie 132kV double circuit with a higher capacity 132kV circuit

Progression of these investments will require an appropriate regulatory framework, including early confirmation that SSEN Transmission will be the Delivery Body, alongside securing all planning and regulatory approvals.  They will also be subject to extensive public consultation to help inform the development of these new and upgraded network infrastructure requirements.

For the other projects in the north of Scotland included in the ESO’s ‘Beyond 2030’ report, further assessment is necessary to determine the appropriate level of investment required to enable the full potential of ScotWind to be realised, including the most appropriate solution for the required north-south transfer of power.