SSEN targets multi-billion investment in transmission plan

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) is proposing an investment of £2.4bn from 2021 to 2026 in its RIIO-T2 business plan, A Network for Net Zero.

Published on 9 December, the transmission plan sets out five key goals for the five-year period, including the transporting of renewable electricity to power 10mn homes. SSEN pledged to deliver an electricity network with the capacity and flexibility to accommodate 10GW renewable generation in the north of Scotland by 2026. It is expecting 8.1GW of generation to be connected to the north of Scotland transmission system by the end of the RIIO-T2 period. 

The plan also set out ambitions for 100% transmission network reliability for homes and businesses by 2026; for every network connection to be tailored to meet customer needs, be on time and on budget; for the controllable greenhouse gas emissions from SSEN’s own operations to be reduced by 33% by 2026, consistent with a net zero emissions pathway; and £100mn in efficiency savings from innovation.

Total expenditure of the plan was forecast as being between £470mn and £750mn each year, equating to an average of £7 a year to the GB consumer over the RIIO-T2 period. Around £927mn is set to be used on replacing or upgrading existing assets, £891mn will be invested in new capacity to enable the decarbonisation of the power grid while £330mn is to be used to maintain security of supplies.

Rob McDonald, Managing Director for SSEN Transmission, said: “With our network region home to some of the UK’s greatest resources of renewable energy we have a critical role to play in the fight to prevent the worst effects of climate change, connecting up more renewable energy and transporting it across the country. We believe our Business Plan represents a balanced package that makes a powerful case for the vital investment needed to deliver a pathway net zero.”