Caithness-Moray is shortlisted at this year's Scottish Green Energy Awards
SSEN's Transmission business has been shortlisted at this year’s Scottish Green Energy Awards, in recognition of its commitment to being a responsible developer with a strong focus on sustainability and environmental awareness during the construction of the £1.1bn Caithness-Moray project.
The Caithness-Moray transmission link, which is SSEN’s largest ever project, is centred on a HVDC submarine cable in the Moray Firth, which will enable 1,200MW of additional renewable capacity to connect to the electricity network in the north of Scotland. As well as the submarine cable, the project includes:
• A new substation and an HVDC converter station at Spittal in Caithness;
• An expanded substation and an HVDC converter station at Blackhillock in Moray;
• Reinforcements of the transmission networks between Dounreay and Mybster and Loch Buidhe and Beauly.
SSEN’s entry for this year’s awards is focussed on the work it has undertaken at Spittal, Thurso and Mybster:
For Spittal, the landscaping plan was amended to include a richer species mix and green channel design, with a view to promoting habitat complexity and diversity.
At Thurso South Substation, in partnership with the Bumblebee Conservation Trust, a species mix was designed to support pollinators (particularly the Great Yellow Bumblebee, which is only found in the North of Scotland) and used to enhance 10 hectares of critical habitat. This work has already seen SSEN scoop three awards (including Overall Winner) at the CIRIA BIG Biodiversity challenge.
Finally, at Mybster, to avoid amphibians being trapped in cable trenches, special ladders were designed and placed in gully pots with advice from the British Herpetological Society. This has proved very successful in sustaining the local frog population.
Speaking ahead of the awards, SSEN’s Head of Environment, Richard Baldwin, said:
“As a responsible developer, SSEN is very excited to be shortlisted at this year’s prestigious Scottish Green Energy Awards for its responsible approach to managing and enhancing its environmental impact. As we continue to transition to a low carbon economy, it is vital that the infrastructure projects which facilitate this transition are focussed on being as environmentally aware and sustainable as possible.”
This year's Scottish Green Energy Awards take place in Edinburgh on 6 December.
The above photo shows the wildflower mix at Thurso South Substation.