Project Type: Transmission reinforcement
Location: Shetland, Highland

Contact Details

Kelly Scott
Title: Community Liaison Manager
Mobile: 07443 772 946
Address: Networks
1 Waterloo Street
Glasgow
G2 6AY
Status: Early Development

Latest

Shetland Notice of Interest Form

If you are a local developer and would like to share details of your project plans (generation or demand) with us please fill out the notice of interest form using the link above. Please note that this is not a formal application for a connection. Alternatively if you wish to make a formal application to connect please visit: https://www.ssepd.co.uk/Connections/. For questions about the form please contact shetland.policy@sse.com.

About the project

The weather in and around the Shetland Isles is considered to be very productive for renewable energy generation. There is currently >600MW of generation proposed that would require a mainland connection if constructed and recent developments in relation to available government funding for generators on islands has increased the possibility that these projects will be progressed. Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks has a transmission licence requirement to provide connection to the UK’s network when requested by a generator.

The aim of the Shetland project is to allow for the export of renewable energy generation from Shetland to the UK mainland, connecting Shetland to the Nation’s Electricity Transmission System for the first time.

The project proposal will consist of a high voltage direct current (HVDC) link. including approximately 260km of cabling, all but 10km of which will be in the sea. A 320/132kV substation and HVDC convertor station will be required, proposed at Upper Kergord on Shetland. An HVDC Switching Station will also be necessary to facilitate connection to the existing Transmission system at Noss Head in Caithness.

 

 

 

Public Consultation – Marine HVDC Cable

Members of the project development team are working towards a detailed design for the subsea cable which will link Shetland to the Scottish Mainland and are aiming to submit a Marine License Application Submission by the end of this year. A pre-application public consultation shall be held prior to this to provide further information to local stakeholders.

Details of the proposals from the previous public consultation events are available to download via the ‘Project Documentation’ section of this page.

Note: For the latest information about the process to deliver a new energy solution on Shetland’s distribution network, please go to www.ssen.co.uk/ShetlandEnergy

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 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?

SHE Transmission 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. 

Shetland Renewables Supply Chain Event

Last week, representatives from our development team supported a renewables focused supply chain event and networking lunch organised by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) in Lerwick. Around 80 representatives from local businesses attended the event to find out further information about the expected economic and social opportunities that proposed renewable projects could bring to Shetland should developers be successful in bidding into next year’s CfD auction. We welcomed the opportunity to engage with attendees and answer questions regarding the needs case process and would encourage all local contractors who are interested in potential opportunities with SSEN to sign up for project updates on our Shetland webpage.

HVDC Cable Tender

SHE Transmission has now begun the tendering process to appoint a cable supplier for the land and subsea HVDC element of the project. Industry leading suppliers were provided with the opportunity to bid for the contract to both supply and install the 600MW cable. The tendering process involves site visits to both Caithness and Shetland, so that potential contractors can assess how the cable will be installed and subsequently costed whilst also identifying any potential challenges and solutions to the installation. This process will continue throughout this year with the aim of having project costs available for submission to Ofgem in January 2019.

Customer Engagement Event

On 23 May, SSEN held a customer engagement event at the Shetland Hotel designed to update stakeholders on the proposed HVDC connection project and the process involved for securing regulatory approval. This forum also afforded developers an opportunity to update SSEN on their plans for projects that may come forward as a result of the proposed connection to the Scottish Mainland. Developers interested in attending the event were encouraged to contact SSEN to confirm their place in advance and the event was well attended with 35 attendees joining the team in discussion. Key themes and issues which emerged from the discussions included the future security of demand on Shetland, with many attendees raising questions in regards to this. The team explained that Scottish Hydro Electric Power Distribution (SHEPD) have identified that with targeted investment, security of supply can be maintained through the existing power station out to 2025 when a more enduring solution will be required. SHEPD has confirmed its allowance requirements to Ofgem for the extension period, and Ofgem is currently consulting on the allowances. In the meantime, Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission will continue to progress the case for a transmission link based on the contracted requirements of generators. SSEN were also afforded the opportunity to further test the principles of the alternative approach applied in Orkney on the issues faced by generators in Shetland. Overall, attendees welcomed the principles of ensuring that projects that are ready to connect can access available capacity on the network and welcomed further opportunity to engage on the detail of these proposals; setting out their ambition to take forward generation development should the capacity become available. SSEN will be consulting on the ‘alternative approach’ later in the summer (when more details will be shared via this website) and encourages all parties that are considering development to update us via a Notice of Interest form by close of play 30 June. A number of attendees from Local Suppliers also joined the event to find out more about engaging in any supply chain opportunities that may arise. Whilst the event was primarily focussed on generation activity, the project team are considering holding a ‘meet the buyer’ event in 2019 once the SSEN tender process is concluded due to the high level of local supply chain interest. In the meantime, interested local suppliers can register on SSE’s online procurement portal, Open4Business, for future tender opportunities. Details about the portal can be found here: https://www.sseopen4business-highlands.com/ Information slides shown at the event are available to download from the ‘Project Documents’ tab.

Team Site Visit - February 2018

Having recently introduced some fresh faces to our Shetland Project Team, we arranged a site visit earlier this week to introduce ourselves and to provide an update to local stakeholders, Tingwall, Whiteness and Weisdale Community Council and our colleagues in Operations based in Lerwick Power Station. We also took the opportunity to revisit the planned substation location at Upper Kergord, the proposed subsea cable landing point at Weisdale Voe and our engineers took full advantage of the sunny weather by walking the planned cable route between the two. If you would like a copy of the project update presented this week please see the 'Project Documentation' tab for a download of the Power Point.

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

Sign up for project updates

To keep informed of all that is happening on this project, please complete your details below and provide consent to enable us to send you updates via email

For information on how we collect and process your data, please see our privacy notice at www.ssen.co.uk/PrivacyNotice/. If you do not have access to our website, or would like to receive a hard copy, please contact us.