ENW’s proposed project, the Capacity to Customers, (C2C), aims to use new technology to help increase the energy loads transmitted through infrastructure already in place across the north west England to help reduce carbon emissions.

It also plans to take advantage of the unused capacity that exists within the current network in order to reduce the amount of new infrastructure required. It is estimated that the overall project will cost £11. 3M and ENW is bidding for £10M of finance from the Government’s Ofgem Low Carbon Networks Fund (LCNF).

According to ENW’s chief executive, Steve Johnson, the existing distribution network could potentially double the electricity it sends to properties in the region.

He said: “At any given time, the existing distribution network could theoretically carry up to twice as much electricity to homes and businesses in the region – but this additional capacity is currently required in case there is a fault.

“It’s a long-established principle and requirement for all distribution network operators to have this latent capacity built into their network.”

As a result of the low carbon targets, Johnson warned that the economy would see a much higher demand for electricity in the future.

“Secure power supplies are critical for all our customers and for the north west’s economic activity”, Johnson added.

The C2C project will involve major energy users in the region signing up to a trial which could lead to reduced costs for new connections and lower charges for participating businesses.

Carys Matthews

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