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Fife Council forward-thinking strategies help network collaboration

28/11/2023

Blog piece from Jack Evans 

It was a pleasure to be part of opening Fife Council’s COP Conference 23 November 2023 with the Fife Partnership Board alongside Fife Council Chief Executive Ken Gourlay.

It was a great opportunity for us to celebrate the partnership SP Energy Networks have built with Fife Council over the years and how demonstrate how collaboration with local authorities helps enable the Net Zero transition.

The electricity network plays a vital role in the transition to Net Zero and meeting government targets. When much of the current electrical infrastructure was installed, there was, on average, only 20 appliances running on electricity – compared to more than 50 in the average home today. Over the next two decades, we expect to see electricity demand rise significantly as we decarbonise heat and transport.

The challenge to reach Net Zero will require SP Energy Networks to focus on a number of areas:

  • Creating additional network capacity
  • Managing increasing complexity in network
  • Enhancing the resilience of the network
  • and addressing Customer vulnerabilities due to increased dependence on electricity supply.

The Central and Fife district will lead the delivery in many of those areas, especially when it comes to reinforcing the network. In the Fife region we have already installed 480MW of distributed generation. By 2030 an additional 500MW of generation and 500MW of battery storage is forecasted to be installed, which would serve the region’s winter peak demand (currently c.380MW, expected to rise to c.530MW by 2030).

Fife Council has taken a strategic and forward-thinking approach, which makes it an ideal partner to collaborate with – especially for a network operator working to long timeframes and clear Net Zero objectives.

I’m proud of the relationship SP Energy Networks and Fife Council has built over the years, which has facilitated acceleration of investments and innovations. Reinforcements around the Dunfermline education campus and developments in the Leven area are examples.

By getting an early understanding of local development plans, we as the network operator can look at the developer applications we have, as well as the network reinforcement plans we need to deliver, to help build a solid network foundation for local economic development in the areas we serve.

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