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National Grid maps out £54bn upgrade plan for UK energy network

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·Finance Reporter, Yahoo Finance UK
·2-min read
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National Grid  Wind turbines are seen at the Saint-Nazaire offshore wind farm, off the coast of the Guerande peninsula in western France, June 9, 2022. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe
National Grid said the required offshore network infrastructure will have a cost of around £32bn. Photo: Stephane Mahe/Reuters

National Grid has unveiled a £54bn ($65bn) plan to upgrade the UK’s power grid, the biggest investment since the 1950s.

The government wants 50 gigawatts of offshore wind operational by 2030, up from 10GW currently and the new network would provide capacity for an additional 23GW.

National Grid said in its 'Pathway to 2030 Holistic Network Design' study that the required offshore network infrastructure will have a cost of around £32bn, whereas the recommended onshore projects will involve an investment of 21.7bn.

Read more: British Airways cancels thousands more flights until October

The main goal of the plan is to enable the delivery of power generated from offshore wind farms to consumers across Great Britain.

National Grid said that these infrastructure projects facilitate the connection of 18 offshore wind farms with a combined capacity of 23 gigawatts, in order to meet the government's ambition of having 50 gigawatts of connected offshore wind by 2030.

National Grid said this plan can deliver consumer savings of around £5.5bn from 2030.

Fintan Slye, executive director of National Grid’s electricity system operator, said the plan “is a key step in providing certainty to offshore wind developers and mitigating potential impacts on the environment and local communities from energy infrastructure."

National Grid PLC operates the transmission network in England and Wales. The Scottish grid is operated by SSE in the north and Iberdrola SA's Scottish Power in the south.

Read more: FTSE 100: Shell share price rises on oil and gas assets upgrade

Ofgem has unveiled a £20bn-plus plan to ramp-up local energy grid capacity across the country but the regulator has assured consumers that they will not see their energy bills rise further because of it.

The proposed package of £20.9bn includes £2.7bn worth of upfront funding to boost grid capacity.

The energy regulator said the upgrade would allow consumers to be given more control to save money through regularly updated prices for peak and off-peak demand.

Watch: How do wind farms change small towns?

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