Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks Transmission (SSEN Transmission) proposed the 600MW high voltage direct current (HVDC) subsea transmission link. It plans to use this in conjunction with SSE Renewables’ planned 443MW Viking wind farm on the islands.
In a statement, SSE said the investments are part of its £7.5bn low-carbon investment programme, announced by the company last month. It also highlighted the contribution to the UK and Scotland’s commitments to net-zero emissions by 2050 and 2045, respectively.
SSE chief executive Alistair Phillips-Davies said: “Today’s decision marks a significant milestone in delivering a ‘whole system’ solution to meet Shetland’s future needs, as well supporting the transition to net zero emissions, and shows again that we are putting our money where our mouth is on driving the green recovery.
“This decision by Ofgem appropriately balances stakeholder interests. That’s something we would hope to see Ofgem return to in its RIIO-T2 price control process, where we need a substantial increase in ambition from what’s in the draft determination if we are to maximise our chances of delivering on net zero.”
Phillips-Davies refers to the recently announced RIIO-T2 price controls, which SSE has repeatedly criticised. The controls would decrease the profit margins for transmission projects, while making significant amounts of up-front funding available.