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Friday, 29 August 2014

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Grid is set to unveil power line proposals

OPTIONS for routes for new power lines across Cumbria are set to be revealed to the public this autumn.

By Andrew Clarke

National Grid has outlined plans to connect new sources of electricity generation in Cumbria to the national power network by creating a North West Coast Power Ring.

The company has been asked to provide a connection for the proposed new 3.2 GW nuclear power station, Moorside, near Sellafield, and a number of windfarms in the Irish Sea.

The preferred routes under the North West Coast Connections (NWCC) project were due to be revealed last September – and the public asked for its views. However, National Grid put its plans on hold after talks with NuGen, the firm behind Moorside.

It is now anticipated that an announcement on the NWCC plans and a subsequent public consultation, involving leaflets sent to homes and drop-in sessions, will take place in the coming months.

Last year, National Grid consulted with local authorities, key groups and individuals on six broad options. Two options were then taken forward – both of which would see the creation of a power ring that would connect coastal areas into the existing grid system and also create the opportunity for future energy generators to link in to the network.

National Grid is now assessing these two options to identify potential corridors where new infrastructure could be routed.

Work is focusing on looking for onshore routes to the north of Moorside where there is the potential to follow the path of existing low voltage power lines which are operated by Electricity North West.

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