British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson said the government is making plans to revise the way offshore wind farms are connected to the grid. Johnson said the government is “in the process of developing the necessary organizational changes” to allow projects to join the network in a more coordinated manner.
BEIS is currently leading a review of the existing OFTO system, which links projects to the coast via individual radio links.
The comments came during the prime minister’s questions on Wednesday after Conservative North Norfolk MP Duncan Baker sought to clarify the progress of the review.
Baker said the judicial review that nullified the Norfolk Vanguard project approval of 1.8 gigawatts of Fatnfull Last week on the grounds that the cumulative impacts on the ground had not been considered, he urgently demonstrated the need for a new approach.
“If the UK is to become the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for wind energy … the current fragmented and environmentally damaging way of connecting projects to the grid is holding us back,” Baker said. “We need legal and regulatory reform now.”
Vatnfoul said it was encouraging that the prime minister said the government is working on developing the necessary organizational changes. A Vattenfall spokesperson has long been calling for better network coordination for offshore wind infrastructure. The developer warned that technological and regulatory constraints make large-scale coordination unlikely this decade.
“We cannot put off investing in the development of offshore wind energy, with all the jobs and societal benefits the investment brings, for a long time. It is simply not an option in fighting climate change, nor even for the people of this country who have been promised a green industrial revolution.
Even with increased coordination, the UK will still need to build new onshore substations and underground cables or towers to transmit electricity to the project, the spokesperson added.