It has been announced that the UK will double the amount of electricity it receives from France after plans to build a £1.1 billion cross channel cable was given the go ahead. The cable will be privately funded and will run from near Portsmouth in the UK to Le Havre in France.
The company behind the investment have said that the cable will come online in 2021 and will supply the UK with up to 2 gigawatts of electricity, the equivalent of the power for up to four million homes.
This comes at a welcome time as electricity prices have skyrocketed over the past 6 months and it is hoped that any increase in supply will help lower those prices. The company behind the private investment also say it will help the UK prevent blackouts during a transitional period where old coal power plants are being closed and new nuclear and gas powered stations are still in development.
There are also plans for an additional four cross channel cables to be built in the next couple of decades, a clear sign that the UK government feels that they will increasingly need to import electricity. Critics say that this shows the governments energy policy is failing and that an overreliance on imported electricity puts the country in a dangerous position where the UK’s electricity supply will be in the hands of another country.
With power prices much cheaper in France, it is seen as a very sensible economic move for France to export power to the UK and anything that lowers the price of electricity for businesses within the UK will come as welcome news in the short term.