CCW responds to National Grid’s and SPEN’s announcements on Mid
Wales grid connections
The Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) notes
National Grid’s and Scottish Power Energy Network’s (SPEN)
announcements about the preferred route corridors for the mid Wales
grid connections. The connections are required to connect proposed
new windfarm development to the national electricity network.
CCW is very disappointed that the announcement does not include
a commitment to underground the cables, as CCW had strongly advised
on the need for undergrounding. CCW believes a failure to do so
will have severe and unacceptable impacts on the landscape. On the
preferred 400kV route corridor CCW advised that the section between
Cefn Coch to the north-east of Meifod village should be
undergrounded with potentially further sections undergrounded as
far as Llansantffraid ym Mechain.
For the past three years, as part of its statutory duty, CCW has
been advising National Grid and Scottish Power Energy Networks on
the potential environmental impacts of the proposed routes.
In its advice, CCW has been working to minimise the
environmental impacts which would be caused by each option. This
has included advice on:
- The need to minimise the overall amount of power line
infrastructure, including the sharing of power lines by windfarm
developers where possible;
- The need to avoid a large amount of overhead cabling that would
significantly affect the landscape character of mid Wales.
CCW will expect the detailed routeing studies in the next stage
of the projects to identify ways of reducing and mitigating
CCW will continue to advise and work with National Grid,
Scottish Power Energy Networks and Scottish and Southern
Electricity to address the environmental impacts of new electricity
power lines in mid Wales. In addition to National Grid’s and SPEN’s
projects, Scottish and Southern Electricity is also planning a
132kV connection between the proposed Nant y Moch windfarm and
proposed Cefn Coch substation.
CCW responded to National
Grid during the first public consultation in June 2011 with its
views on the potential nature conservation and landscape impacts of
the route options for the proposed 400kV line. CCW will appraise
the further studies and consultation reports completed by National
Grid and SPEN since this date and reviewing our previous advice on
minimising the environmental impacts of the projects.
CCW notes that the further studies have evaluated the route
corridors in Powys as generally being of a higher landscape
sensitivity than the sections within Shropshire. We will therefore
need to review National Grid’s studies to understand how the
preferred option is the longest route and has the longest section
- For press enquiries please contact Helen Evans, Press Officer,
on 01248 387377 or 07717225589.
- The Countryside Council for Wales is a Welsh Government
Sponsored Body, working for a better Wales where everyone values
and cares for our natural environment. More information about our
work is available on www.ccw.gov.uk