Registration of interested parties has started for the Aquind HVDC power project, after its application was accepted for examination by the Planning Inspectorate. The project is for HVDC cables between the south coast of England and Normandy in France to carry 2GW of power. Registration is open until 19 February 2020.
Approval of the Aquind project and two other interconnector projects to France has been delayed due to uncertainty over Brexit. The French energy regulator CRE stated that it cannot anticipate how interconnectors will be regulated post-Brexit, or how they will impact the European energy market.
The proposed GridLink project would run 160km of HVDC cables between Dunkirk in France and Kingsnorth in the UK, with a capacity of 1.4GW. It would be among the shortest interconnectors between UK and France. Completion is scheduled for 2024.
The Fablink project is for 220km of HVDC cables between substations at Menuel, on the Cotentin peninsula in France, and Exeter in the UK, to transfer 1.4GW. Completion is scheduled for 2025.
The UK currently shares just one interconnector with France, which was commissioned in 1986. National Grid is currently building a second link to France, called IFA 2, which is on schedule to be in operation by Q4 this year.