The Royal Navy has raised objections to a £590 million project backed by National Grid to build a giant subsea electricity cable between Britain and France, amid concerns that it could affect military aircraft. The so-called IFA2 link, a joint venture between National Grid and its French equivalent, RTE, will stretch 127 miles beneath the seabed from Tourbe in Normandy to a site near Portsmouth on the Solent. Supporters say it will help bolster UK electricity supplies by providing up to 1,000 megawatts of electricity — roughly equivalent to the output of Dungeness B nuclear power station — when it enters service in about 2020. But a dispute has broken out over where the high-voltage cable should come ashore — and thus where National Grid will need to build a giant solid-state transformer to feed French electricity into Britain’s power network. The preferred site for the transformer is currently the southern edge of a First World War naval airfield, Daedalus, four miles west of Portsmouth. The historic site was used as a seaplane base and training centre by the Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm but is now owned by Fareham borough council.
Times 11th July 2016 read more »