Local investment to give green projects a power boost

Western Power Distribution will be investing up to £20 million in the electricity grid to boost green growth and jobs across Wales between now and 2023.

The company, which looks after the electricity network in south east Wales, has launched the initiative in a bid to further support green technologies, as the UK looks to recover from the economic impacts of the pandemic over the coming years.

WPD’s investment will upgrade and build new electrical infrastructure and substations, enabling more green developments, such as electric vehicle chargers, mass heat pump installations and renewable generation (eg solar parks), to connect to the electricity network.

Through existing knowledge and future projections, WPD has already identified areas where there is interest in low carbon technology projects and where some network restrictions exist. However, the company is encouraging community groups, developers of low carbon infrastructure and local authorities to submit details of ‘ready to go’ green projects to WPD, to help validate their proposals or identify areas not currently identified for investment.

Where there is clear evidence that upcoming low carbon technologies and green energy projects are ready to connect to the electricity network, WPD will use this in its planning and direct investment to the areas where this can be delivered most effectively over the next two years.

WPD’s operations director Graham Halladay said: “During the pandemic, our staff have been working hard to support customers at a challenging time, but also looking to the future. Innovation is at the forefront of our minds and decarbonising the country is essential to the lives of future generations.

“With this additional investment, backed by Ofgem and the government, we can ramp-up the network requirements for not only renewables, but battery storage, electric vehicles, heat-pumps and all of the other technologies we will need in the future.”

The deadline for this feedback to be submitted is March 19, 2021.

WPD will also be holding a series of regional webinars to discuss the green recovery investment in more detail. Further information on this and how to submit your evidence can be found at www.westernpower.co.uk/green-recovery.

South Wales Argus | Business