To be developed by UK’s National Grid Ventures and Dutch transmission system operator TenneT, the subsea high voltage electricity cable in the North Sea is expected to see a final investment decision around 2025 and become operational by the early 2030s


The LionLink cross-border transmission project will be developed by National Grid Ventures and TenneT. (Credit: National Grid)

The British government has announced a new transmission project called LionLink to be laid under the North Sea to connect the UK and the Netherlands with offshore wind farms.

According to the UK Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, the multi-use electricity power line will transport 1.8GW of electricity.

The electricity interconnector will be developed by UK’s National Grid Ventures and Dutch transmission system operator TenneT. It is expected to come online by the early 2030s.

It has been included as a major project in the North Sea Energy Declaration. The interconnector is planned to connect Dutch wind farms to the electricity grids of the Netherlands and the UK through a subsea high voltage electricity cable.

Claimed to be the largest multi-use electricity power line in the world, the LionLink interconnector is expected to strengthen the energy supplies of the UK by delivering enough power for 1.8 million households.

The new cross-border electricity line is expected to become only the second of its kind in the world.

Compared to the 400MW Kassø-Frøslev, which is the first such transmission link that was laid by Germany and Denmark, LionLink will be capable to deliver more than four times the amount of power as its predecessor.

UK Energy Security Secretary Grant Shapps said: “Today’s historic deal with the Netherlands connects our two countries together through this exciting feat of innovation and engineering – the largest of its kind in the world which will provide enough electricity for more homes than in Manchester and Birmingham combined.

“Together with the strong ties we have with our northern European neighbours united today at the North Sea Summit, we are bolstering our energy security and sending a strong signal to Putin’s Russia that the days of his dominance over global power markets are well and truly over.”

As per the terms of the development agreement announced by TenneT and National Grid Ventures, the parties will carry out studies on and offshore. These include further analysis of available developments and proposals, as part of an integrated European grid.

TenneT said that the development phase is anticipated to drive towards a final investment decision around 2025.

TenneT CEO Manon van Beek said: “It is our conviction that offshore hubs configured in a meshed DC grid must form the backbone of the North Sea powerhouse.

“This is a view that is increasingly shared, and for us, it is more than a vision of the future. In fact, we are already doing it by kicking off this ground-breaking LionLink project right now.”