SSEN Transmission to host consultation events on proposed new substation developments

SSEN Transmission is inviting members of the public to share their views on the next phase of development for four transmission infrastructure schemes across the north of Scotland that will help enable the connection and transportation of vast amounts of new renewable energy around Great Britain.
SSEN Transmission will host consultation events on proposed new substation developments. (Pic: Stuart Nicol Photography)SSEN Transmission will host consultation events on proposed new substation developments. (Pic: Stuart Nicol Photography)
SSEN Transmission will host consultation events on proposed new substation developments. (Pic: Stuart Nicol Photography)

These projects form part of a GB-wide programme of network reinforcements, all critical to deliver UK and Scottish Government energy security and net zero targets.

Views are being sought at over forty events across the region for four proposed onshore 400kV electricity transmission schemes:

  • Beauly – Blackhillock – New Deer – Peterhead;
  • Kintore – Tealing;
  • Spittal – Loch Buidhe – Beauly; and
  • Beauly – Denny.
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These events follow on from the most recent round of consultation on SSEN Transmission’s “Pathway to 2030” programme of network developments, which took place in the spring and summer of 2023.

This time round, the public engagement events will take different forms. SSEN Transmission’s Projects and Community Engagement teams will be hosting:

  • Formal pre-application consultation for new substations
  • Formal consultation on new overhead line routes proposed in the 2023 Reports on Consultation
  • Public engagement on refinements to overhead line routes.

In December, in a series of reports on the first round of consultation, the company announced a number of changes to its original proposals, in direct response to community and stakeholder feedback.

These include:

  • At Blackhillock, south-east of Keith, in Moray, the proposed new substation site is moving from that consulted on earlier this year to the east of Keith, to one of the other shortlisted sites to the south-east of the existing Blackhillock substation.
  • The previously proposed new substation at Fiddes in the Mearns is moving to a new proposed site in Fetteresso Forest, in close proximity to the existing Fetteresso substation.
  • Several other changes and additional options on overhead line routes to reduce community impacts.

Rob McDonald, Managing Director of SSEN Transmission, said: “This is one of the biggest investment programmes in the north of Scotland for almost a century. Our £20bn programme will help unlock cleaner, more secure energy for homes and businesses for generations to come.

“The north of Scotland can be a clean energy powerhouse and is set to play a leading role in delivering UK and Scottish Government energy security and net zero targets, and as a stakeholder-led business, we want to bring communities on that journey with us.

“This next round of public engagement and statutory pre-application consultations events will be crucial in further informing the development of this critical national infrastructure in a way that balances the needs of all stakeholders, alongside delivering a lasting and positive legacy, unlocking the north of Scotland’s energy and economic potential.

“As a stakeholder-led business, the views shared at these events really matter to us, and help to shape the development of our projects massively, as can be seen in the changes made to our initial proposals after the first consultation round, so we’d really encourage anyone who has an interest to come along, find out about our plans and share their thoughts.”

Consultation events will take place from 22 February to 28 March, with a further public engagement event to be organised in April for the Western Isles Link Project. All in-person feedback on the proposals will be welcomed until the events end, however, the project and community engagement teams will always accept feedback and input throughout the development stage of each project.

Visit ssen-transmission.co.uk to find out more.