Northern Powergrid reveals plans to create 1,000 jobs across North East, Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire
The company has announced proposals to invest £3.2 billion as part of its draft plan for 2023 to 2028, which has been submitted to Ofgem as part of its price control review process.
A spokesman said: "It signals decisive action that see investment increase by 36% to more than £600m per year to ensure the region’s power network can support the expected growth in electricity demand that will come from the anticipated electrification of heat and transport.
"The plan details how the network operator will strengthen its role as a regional leader of decarbonisation and invest in decarbonisation technologies, systems, and strategies, to offer its customers enhanced services across its entire business.
"As part of the proposals Northern Powergrid outlines its plans to tailor its services to vulnerable customers to support a socially inclusive transition to net zero so no one is left behind, and boost its workforce through new jobs.
"The company’s focus on keeping bills fair for customers means that the impact on domestic customers’ energy bills is less than 10p per week, despite the significant increase in investment."
Phil Jones, Northern Powergrid’s chief executive, said: “We are setting out our intentions as one of the leading investors in the region’s transition to net zero. We see it as a fantastic opportunity and a significant responsibility. Our network will be instrumental in the shift to low carbon energy and we are responding to the calls from our stakeholders to invest in the network technologies that will make it all possible.”
“This is not more of the same – we’re going to create the low carbon network of the future at the same time as improving service levels across the board. That means significant change in the way we do business. We need to learn new skills, create new job opportunities in the region and make the most of innovation, particularly in the area of data and digital technology.”
He added: “It’s hard to think of a better example of building back better. Over £3bn of investment in the region that delivers real action on climate change and more skilled jobs – on top of improved services in every area of our business. Our proposals help set the region firmly on the pathway to strong, decarbonised regional growth – delivering prosperity and leading the way to net zero.”
Patrick Erwin, Northern Powergrid’s Policy and Markets Director, said: “The pathway to decarbonisation is still uncertain, as emerging technologies such as green hydrogen, carbon capture and storage (CCS) and grid-scale energy storage compete for funding and mainstream uptake. We are proposing a draft plan that will help manage this uncertainty by operating a flexibility-first approach; strengthening the capability of our network and operating a smart, flexible system that can adapt to every potential decarbonisation pathway for our customers.”
“We engaged widely on this draft plan and we believe it delivers on what our customers have said is important to them. As we’ve built this draft plan, feedback to date indicates support for our approach and ambitions for the region – with approval ratings of almost 90%. Now we’ll focus on seeking more feedback so we can deliver in December to our regulator a final 2023-28 business plan that is born out of robust engagement and collaboration with our stakeholders.”
Customers and other key stakeholders wishing to view and share feedback on the plan can access a dedicated website created by Northern Powergrid – www.ed2plan.northernpowergrid.com/.
From September the company will also deliver an engagement campaign to canvass the views of people across the North East, Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire.