Scottish transmission system set for GBP 7bn upgrade

Scotland’s high voltage network could get a GBP 7bn overhaul under plans revealed by UK energy regulator Ofgem.

Ofgem is proposing an upfront investment of GBP 2.9bn, followed by further payments of GBP 4.7bn until 2021, made to SP Transmission and Scottish Hydro Electric Transmission.

The companies are the first to have funding fast-tracked under Ofgem’s price control framework called RIIO (Revenue= Incentives+Innovation+Outputs).

The RIIO is designed to incentivise companies to deliver over GBP 30bn of investment needed to meet the energy infrastructure challenges of the next decade by cutting red tape to offer speedier financing.

Ofgem chief executive Alistair Buchanan said that the upgraded network “will greatly assist connections to renewable generators”.

Hannah Nixon, senior partner in charge of the RIIO process, said that both transmission companies “have embraced the new RIIO process and understood its importance in addressing the question of how best to meet future energy demands at the lowest cost to consumers”.

 Ofgem will publish initial proposals for the funding on 6 February. These will be open for consultation until 19 March and it will publish its final proposals in April.

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