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Sat July 20 2024

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Consultation begins on Suffolk-Kent cable link

24 Oct 23 National Grid today begins statutory consultation on plans to build a 2GW high voltage direct current (HVDC) cable link between Suffolk and Kent.

The 145km-long Sea Link is designed to carry renewable energy across the country from where it is generated.

The proposals include modifications to sections of existing overhead lines in Suffolk and Kent, diversions of third-party assets, and land drainage from the construction and operational footprint.

The development consent order application requires a statutory consultation, which is taking place between 24th October and 18th December 2023.

The proposed Project is split into three elements: onshore in Suffolk; onshore in Kent; and offshore.

The Suffolk onshore scheme comprises:

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    a connection from the existing transmission network via the proposed Friston substation, including the substation itself. Friston Substation already has development consent as part of other projects.

  • a 1.7km high voltage alternating current (HVAC) underground cable between Friston substation and a proposed converter station
  • a 2GW HVDC converter station up to 26 metres high near Saxmundham
  • a 10km HVDC underground cable between the proposed converter station near Saxmundham and a transition joint bay (TJB) approximately 900 metres inshore from a landfall point between Aldeburgh and Thorpeness.

The Kent onshore scheme comprises:

  • a landfall point on the Kent coast at Pegwell Bay
  • a TJB 800 metres inshore to transition from offshore HVDC cable to onshore HVDC cable, before continuing underground for approximately 2 km to a proposed new 2GW converter station near Minster
  • removal of 1 km of existing HVAC overhead line and installation of 2.25 km of new HVAC overhead line from the converter station and substation near Minster and the existing Richborough to Canterbury overhead line.

The offshore scheme is 130 km of subsea HVDC cable between the Suffolk landfall location and the Kent landfall at Pegwell Bay.

If the planning application process goes according to plan, construction would take place between 2026 and 2030.

For more details, see www.nationalgrid.com/electricity-transmission/network-and-infrastructure/infrastructure-projects/sealink

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