Manufactured by Danish cable producer NKT in Sweden, the loading of the undersea cable will begin on 24 September onto the vessel named NKT Victoria for transit to the Channel Islands. The ship is expected to arrive in Greve de Lecq in Jersey on 3 October and Havelet Bay in Guernsey on 6 October ready for installation, weather permitting. As scheduled, the new cable should be energised with all site works and burial complete in both Islands in early November.
The cable, which is 37.4km long and weighs 77kg per metre, is part of the infrastructure connecting Guernsey to France via Jersey, which in its entirety is referred to as GJ1. It is only the subsea element of the cable connecting Guernsey to Jersey that is being replaced.
Guernsey Electricity project manager Sharon Watchorn explained the time critical nature of the project.
“This is an emergency replacement of part of the Channel Islands Electricity Grid network; hence the project has been significantly fast tracked to minimise the environmental effects of Guernsey relying on fossil fuels for electricity generation. A project of this complexity would usually take two to three years.
“We are pleased that the project timeline is on track as this means - weather permitting - that the Island will return to a low carbon and renewable supply of electricity by the end of 2019.
“We would again like to thank all stakeholders for their support and understanding of this essential project.”
The existing importation cable has now been switched off to allow safe completion of the final stages of the project. The Island is now reliant on on-island generation only, and therefore resilience to electricity supply disruptions is reduced.
Guernsey Electricity would like to reassure islanders that work will be completed as quickly and safely as possible and preparatory works have been completed to minimise risks and potential supply disruption.
For more information please visit: www.electricity.gg/about/importing-electricity-via-gj1/.