Britain has taken the first step towards constructing the world's longest subsea cable, which will transmit sufficient energy to power up to seven million UK homes. The move will be important in helping tackle the existing energy crisis, with the project - located at Hunterston in Scotland - now having been given planning permission to begin manufacturing operations. When the construction phase is complete, the 3,800km-long cable will be connected from the UK to a vast solar farm in Morocco.
This is a huge and innovative development being driven by a clean energy start up, Xlinks. Undersea cables will be used to transmit clean energy produced in Guelmim Oued Noun, creating a clean energy partnership between the nations that will also create new jobs and investment as well as support the drive to carbon neutrality.
The project hopes to produce 10.5GW of solar energy and 2.6GW of wind energy for around 20 hours each day. Furthermore, the cable energy is expected to be half the price of the power that will be produced at the Hinkley Point C power plant, despite being clean and renewable. The government has agreed to pay £92.50 per MWH of energy for Hinkley Point C, whilst the clean energy transported by the subsea cable will cost just £48 per MWH.
It's expected that the whole project will take four years to complete and cost around £16 billion. Half of the costs will go on the construction of the cables. The XLCC project director, Alan Mathers, said that the company was looking forward to delivering a project of international importance which would help to further position the UK as a global leader in green energy. It will also help to ease the UK's energy crisis at a time when consumers most urgently need it.