The UK government is currently evaluating the 3,800km submarine cable that Xlinks plans to build. It will connect a 10.5 GW wind farm in Morocco with sites in Wales and England. The UK authorities may eventually buy electricity from the plant through a contract for difference scheme.
For PV, the document sets a 2035 solar energy target of 70 GW and offers a set of general measures to support the deployment of rooftop and large solar installations. It does not provide specific information about financial support for the proposed goals.
It does, however, include a brief reference to one of the most ambitious solar projects ever developed globally – a 10.5GW wind-solar project being developed in Morocco by UK-based Xlinks. The project will be connected to the UK electricity system via an undersea cable.
“Tthe government is interested Xlinkp project, proposed large-scale wind, solar and battery electricity production plant in Morocco supplies electricity exclusively to the UK grid via high voltage direct current cables,” the document says. “The board is considering – without commitment – the profitability and merits of the organization proposal to see if it could contribute to the UK’s energy security.”
Xlinks CEO Simon Morrish said pv magazine that That’s true “the huge potential of the project. He said it would “help the UK accelerate its transition to clean energy sources, increase energy security, reduce consumer bills and achieve net zero”.
In May 2022, the British investment company Octopus Energy signed an agreement with Xlinks to develop a huge facility. If built, it will include 7 GW of solar and 3.5 GW of wind in Morocco. The plant will also be connected to a 5 GW/20 GWh battery storage.
The wind-solar complex will be connected to the UK electricity grid in Alverdiscott, Devon and Pembroke by a 3,800km high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission line. The developer said this could include four separate cables, making it the world’s longest undersea transmission link.
Xlinks plans to sell electricity to the UK grid under a contract-for-difference system.
printed edition of pv magazine
April issue pv magazineA paper out Wednesday examines how the long-established connection between solar energy and cannabis cultivation can help improve margins as the drug’s medicinal and recreational uses come out of the weed. We take a trip Down Under to explore why communities are rebelling against planned renewable energy zones, which are seen as being delivered by rail without sufficient local consultation, and consider the wave of ‘solar crime’ sweeping the UK and Europe.
“We hope to conclude bilateral negotiations with the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS),” Morrish said. pv magazine in April 2021, when the project was launched. “But we could also compete in future auctions if there was an allocation for such a project.”
However, without the option of a separation agreement, the project has limited opportunities to be realized.