Billions of pounds are set to be invested to connect Scottish wind farms to the UK grid, potentially adding more to household energy bills.
Industry regulator Ofgem announced earlier this week that it had decided to fast-track plans to boost infrastructure spending by utilities providers Scottish Power and Scottish and Southern Energy. The work is expected to cost somewhere in the region of £7bn.
Consumers will cover the cost through energy prices, and it is thought that an extra 35p will be added to the average annual household bill from next year to 2021. Around 1,500 jobs are expected to be created as part of the scheme.
Ofgem insisted that the work would “deliver essential upgrades to Scotland’s infrastructure network at the lowest cost to consumers”. Scottish Power Energy Networks chief executive said the plan represented the “most significant” electricity infrastructure investment for 60 years.
The announcement came after research from price comparison website uSwitch.com indicated that energy bills had almost doubled over the last six years, climbing by 91 per cent to reach an average outlay of £1,259.