The government of the Flemish Region in Belgium has approved the launch notice for the construction of Ventilus, a high-voltage project, proposed to be built by Belgian transmission system operator (TSO) Elia in the West Flanders province.


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According to Elia, the Ventilus transmission project is important for connecting additional renewable power generation from both onshore and offshore facilities. The high-voltage project will also be crucial for exchanging international energy flows, said the Belgian TSO.

As per the plans, the proposed Flemish transmission project will connect wind energy sourced from the North Sea offshore wind farms to a new electricity highway located in West Flanders.

Upon its completion, the transmission project is also expected to connect new power generating facilities in West Flanders to the power grid. The project’s interlinkage with the Stevin high-voltage line is anticipated to help in enhancing grid reliability in not just the region but also across Belgium.

The Ventilus project will also facilitate a second overseas connection with the UK.

Elia believes that Ventilus, through connections to other grid projects, will make up a robust electricity network that will facilitate the transmission of renewable energy.

Through the project, the Flemish government and Elia are said to be taking a major step towards a more sustainable energy system.

The Belgian TSO said that the transmission project is part of a larger network development plan, which is slated to be executed between 2020 and 2030.

Ventilus is expected to enable Belgium to achieve its climate targets with the National Energy and Climate Plan of the country aiming at an energy consumption of 18.3% to come from renewable sources by 2030.

Flemish Minister for the Environment, Nature and Agriculture Koen Van den Heuvel said: “If we want to meet our targets, we must invest in renewable energy in the next few years. This goes hand in hand with shoring up and further developing our power grid.

“Only then can we achieve the energy transition and provide consumers with a reliable power supply. The Flemish government is making every effort to guarantee a robust and smooth land-use planning procedure so that the offshore wind turbines in the North Sea can be connected in good time.”

The route of the proposed transmission project will be determined after receiving feedback from the general public and interested groups, said Elia.