Lincolnshire

National Grid details Denmark electricity sea cable plans

Pylons and turbines on Bicker Fen, near Boston Image copyright Google
Image caption Bicker Fen is being considered due to its distance from Denmark and its existing infrastructure

National Grid is working on a project to import electricity from Denmark to the UK via an undersea power cable, it has emerged.

The proposed landing point for the subsea cables is near Bicker Fen, Lincolnshire, where electricity would be fed into the network.

Experts say it would help meet demand and lower prices for consumers.

But opponents have said they are concerned the area is becoming too industrialised.

National Grid spokeswoman Isobel Rowley said the project was in its early stages, but, if successful, the link with Denmark would be a first - with only two other undersea cables currently connecting the UK to Europe.

She said Bicker had been chosen as a possible site due to its proximity to Denmark and its existing infrastructure.

Viking Link project

  • The project, called Viking Link, would carry excess electricity from Denmark to the UK, and vice-versa
  • The system would be capable of producing about 1,000 megawatts of electricity - the equivalent of a large power station
  • About 400 miles (650km) of cable would be used - with a converter site located in each country
  • The two other sites being used to process electricity which comes via underwater cables - from France and the Netherlands - are in Kent

The electricity could be fed into the national network from Bicker.

Ms Rowley stressed there would be "extensive consultation" with the public and local authorities.

She said about the benefits of the scheme: "If you consider this cable can supply as much electricity as a large power station, they are extremely useful and beneficial to the consumer.

"Europe has more renewable energy - so when it is in surplus - they will be able to export it here," she added.

The system would also carry electricity generated through more traditional methods.

'Giant power station'

Colin Davie, Lincolnshire County Council's executive member for economic development and the environment, said he was concerned about the impact of the project on the area.

He said: "It looks like it could be a very substantial development and something we would want to examine very closely.

"I think there is a danger Bicker Fen could become a giant power station for a number of different developments," he said.

Local people are already fighting proposals for a large substation in Bicker to process power generated by an offshore wind farm.

They say the infrastructure, building work and increased traffic from this latest project would ruin the "beautiful landscape" of Bicker Fen, and have described the scheme as a "nightmare".

National Grid is currently undertaking seabed surveys to ascertain the best route for the cable.

Even if it is given the go-ahead, the system is not expected to be operational until 2020.

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