National Grid: UK-France interconnector pays off carbon cost in under a year

The 1GW IFA2 electricity cable has saved more carbon in its first year than the total carbon used to build it

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The electricity interconnector between the UK and France has paid off its carbon cost in less than a year, according to National Grid.

The 1GW IFA2 underground power cable, which stretches 120 miles from Lee-on-Solent near Portsmouth to Caen in northwest France, was commissioned in January 2021 and is the UK’s second link to France.

The interconnector, which enables the UK to import enough low carbon electricity to power one million homes, saved 300,000 tonnes of carbon in the first 12 months of operation.

The saving is 10,000 tonnes more than the amount of carbon emitted during its four-year build and any carbon that will be used in the daily running of the asset over its lifetime.

Nicola Medalova, Managing Director Interconnectors for National Grid said: “This is fantastic news and highlights the critical role that interconnectors like IFA2 are playing in delivering a cleaner, more secure and more affordable energy system for UK consumers.

“By 2030, we estimate our interconnectors, including IFA2, will have saved the UK around 100 million tonnes of CO2 by enabling the fast and flexible sharing of clean and green energy with our European neighbours.”

National Grid’s sixth interconnector, Viking Link, is currently under construction and will connect the UK with Denmark by the end of 2023.

By 2024, National Grid’s interconnectors will enable the sharing of enough clean electricity to power eight million UK homes.