Hydro power station plays key part as SSEN avoids substantial carbon emissions


Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) has avoided 2,450 tonnes of CO2 emissions and saved customers £230,000 through using a smarter energy approach.

On 8 April, it announced that it had used Constraint Managed Zones (CMZ) on the Isle of Islay since October 2019, offering a low-carbon solution to avoid network reinforcement, leading to the substantial cost and carbon savings. It explained that CMZs serve as an alternative to traditional generation being used when the main electricity network is temporarily disconnected. With SSEN teams progressing plans to replace the subsea cable between Jura and Tayvallich on the mainland after a fault in November, 40% of the average local electricity demand was met by the Inver Hydro Power Station on Jura, proving close to 5GWh of renewable energy.

SSEN said the successful use of its CMZ marked an “important milestone” in the UK energy system, with low-carbon technology capably supporting system security in an economically viable manner on the islands of Islay, Jura and Colonsay.

Stewart Reid, Head of Future Networks at SSEN, said: “The proliferation of low-carbon technologies is creating more opportunities to take a low-carbon approach to addressing network constraint. Managing our energy system in a smarter way helps decarbonisation efforts in a cost-effective manner for the communities we serve. Our ambition is now to increase CMZ usage across both our distribution areas, to deliver cost savings and significant carbon reductions.”