'Clear and detailed information' on alternatives to pylon plans, calls new motion

Pylons

A new motion asks Suffolk County Council to request 'clear and detailed information' on an alternative to National Grid's East Anglia GREEN project. - Credit: Archant

A controversial pylon project will face further scrutiny next week following a call for "clear and detailed information" on an alternative to its 180km network through East Anglia.

A motion to Suffolk County Council calls on it to write to National Grid Electricity Transmission (NGET) to restate their opposition and request details of an alternative to the plans.

The project would see a 180km network of 50-metre tall 400kV pylons cutting through the Suffolk and Essex countryside.

It has faced wide-scale opposition from residents, a Suffolk MP and groups across Suffolk and Essex.

National Grid's pylon plan

The controversial project would see a 180km network of 50-metre tall 400kV pylons cutting through the Suffolk and Essex countryside. - Credit: National Grid

A petition calling for the plans to be shelved, with alternatives proposed to place cables under the sea, has reached over 21,000 signatures since its launch in May.

The motion, which will go before the council on Thursday, seeks backing  to write to NGET asking that they "publish clear and detailed information setting out what an offshore centred alternative to their onshore East Anglia GREEN proposal would entail."

It was proposed by Councillor Richard Rout, Suffolk County Council's cabinet member for environment and public protection, and seconded by Stour Valley conservative Councillor James Finch.

Councillor Richard Rout

The motion was proposed by Councillor Richard Rout, Suffolk County Council's cabinet member for environment and public protection. - Credit: Suffolk County Council

If the motion is accepted, Suffolk County Council will be reinstating their opposition to the East Anglia GREEN proposal.

In a letter written to Greg Hands, the minister of state for business, energy and clean growth, Councillor Rout said: "The council absolutely supports ambitions for renewable energy and the government's commitment to meet the target of Net Zero by 2150.

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"We recognise the benefits that can come from this project and we continue to work with the government to develop coordinated off-shore transmission.

"However, the council objects to the proposal for National Grid's East Anglia GREEN as it stands. I am determined that Suffolk will not suffer unnecessarily as a consequence, we will continue to protect our communities, residents and natural environment.

"We are demanding that a more collaborative solution is found to manage the different network connection requirements coming into Suffolk and East Anglian and that all network options are fully explored."

The motion to request information on alternatives to the current plans will be considered by Suffolk County Council at their next meeting on Thursday, July 7.