GOSPORT MP Caroline Dinenage is seeking a pledge that the proposed £500m Daedalus power centre would be ‘100 per cent safe’ and not blight nearby communities.
National Grid revealed plans on Friday to build an interconnector convertor station over 10 acres of land at the former navy airfield at Lee-on-the-Solent.
We need to be sure it’s 100 per cent safe and not a nuisance, and properly designed in terms of a visual impact point of viewGosport MP Caroline Dinenage
It would be the second electricity link between England and France, converting power for more than a million homes and giving a major boost to the local economy.
But the link, officially called IFA2 but dubbed Farelink by Fareham’s council leader Sean Woodward, has generated a mixed response, with some people saying they are glad more homes haven’t been proposed while others are wary about the scale of the development.
Ms Dinenage said all necessary checks have to be made.
She said: ‘It’s a more positive use of the site than cramming in homes.
‘The business rates will make a huge contribution to the local economy.
‘It will bring forward investment at Daedalus; there are already plans to extend the runway and build a visitor centre.
‘These are all projects we want to do. But I need to be reassured that it’s safe and won’t impact the lives of residents.
‘We need to be sure it’s 100 per cent safe and not a nuisance, and properly designed in terms of a visual impact point of view.’
If granted planning permission, the station would convert energy brought over from Europe on high voltage undersea cables running for more than 100 miles. It would also allow energy produced here to be converted and exported to Europe.
As the interconnector also requires a connection to the national electricity grid, it would be connected via five miles of undersea cables, plus a short distance underground, to the existing substation in Chilling, Warsash.
Fareham Borough Council owns the land and stands to make a multi-million sum from the deal with the National Grid.
Cllr Woodward said the move will allow ‘the lights to stay on in England’.
‘If we don’t do anything, the lights will go off by 2020,’ he said.
A number of public consultation events on the project are to be held in December.