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Mid Suffolk Councillor offers alternative solution to controversial East Anglia Green project



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As opposition grows to proposals for huge new electricity pylons and cables stretching across East Anglia, a Mendlesham councillor has proposed a radically different approach for getting power from wind turbines to the main areas of consumer demand.

National Grid is currently holding a consultation on its ‘East Anglia GREEN’ project, which it says is needed to help the UK achieve its ambition of net zero emissions by 2050 – and because the current infrastructure is not fit for purpose.

The plan will see 50-metre-high pylons built along the A140 toward to its destination at Tilbury, on the Thames estuary.

Mid Suffolk Councillor Andrew Stringer has proposed an alternative solution to the controversial plans to erect more pylons across East Anglia. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2022.
Mid Suffolk Councillor Andrew Stringer has proposed an alternative solution to the controversial plans to erect more pylons across East Anglia. Picture: Mark Bullimore Photography 2022.

Andrew Stringer, a Mid Suffolk district councillor for the Mendlesham ward, said: “At 45 to 50 metres high, if these proposed pylons go ahead, they will have a massive impact on our rural landscapes and community green spaces.

“In particular, the setting of many listed buildings would be greatly diminished.

The Green Party councillor has instead proposed an alternative option – undersea cables.

The idea, which was proposed as long ago as 2012 by the late Michael Blakenham, then an Independent on Mid Suffolk District Council – is that a cable can run along the seabed off the east coast, linking the offshore wind farms and Sizewell nuclear power station with London.

“Given that this alternative grid solution would meet our increasing need for green electricity cables with far less impact, it really does merit further, serious consideration.

“Although we highlighted these options months ago, National Grid has not provided a clear analysis of the financial options.”

Since National Grid announced the plans, several Suffolk councillors and MPs have criticised the plans, with Central Suffolk and North Ipswich MP Dan Poulter saying he is "extremely concerned" about the impact they could have on the local landscape.

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