Scottish and Southern Energy Power Distribution (SSEPD) is seeking views from a wide range of stakeholders on the electricity network on Orkney and options for reinforcement.

Stuart Hogarth, Director of Distribution said: "The network on Orkney leads the world on its innovative approach to connecting small scale renewables, allowing the harvesting of the significant natural resources that are abundant on the islands.

"It is our core purpose to provide a reliable electricity supply to our customers, whether an individual pensioner or a large business, and also to facilitate the connection of renewable generation. SSEPD has invested extensively in the electricity network in Orkney, initially to provide a secure supply to the islands and latterly to connect as much renewable generation as possible.

"The development of marine renewables is widely anticipated over the coming years, and there is still a demand for further small scale renewables to be connected. We want to listen to the views of developers, households, businesses and wider stakeholders on how we can work together to achieve the best solution."

Councillor James Stockan, Chair of the Development and Infrastructure Committee at Orkney Islands Council said: "We are very aware of the disadvantage Orkney faces at present in terms of access to the grid to enable us to benefit fully from our vast renewable resources.

"We support any opportunity to find a way forward, both in terms of short term solutions to overcome our grid constraints and in the medium term a transmission link to unlock the potential that we have in Orkney.

"We hope that members of the public will take the time to contribute to this consultation, to help progress work on this most crucial issue for Orkney’s future prosperity."