In our penultimate Alert on the draft energy infrastructure National Policy Statements we look at the draft NPS for Electricity Networks Infrastructure (EN-5).

EN-5 covers the following types of infrastructure in England and Wales:

  • above ground electricity lines of 132kV and above; and
  • other infrastructure for electricity networks that is associated with a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (NSIP) Lines below 132kV will not be covered by the NPS unless they are associated with an NSIP which is to be determined by the IPC.

EN-1 (the Overarching National Policy Statement for Energy) includes assessments relating to the need for new major electricity networks infrastructure. EN-5 covers:  

  • factors influencing site selection  
  • environmental impact principles  
  • the role of connection agreements  
  • the contribution of new networks to renewable energy and security of supply  
  • the resilience of new networks to climate change  
  • good design to mitigate new networks' impact on landscape and visual amenity, noise and vibration and electric and magnetic fields (EMFs)  

EMFs can arise from the generation, transmission, distribution and use of electricity. EN-5 includes a simplified route map to be used by the IPC when considering the impact of EMFs from overhead power lines; please see overleaf for the route map.

Please click here to view diagram.

RPC comments

The generation of electricity is becoming more diversified (both in type and locality), and supply and demand is becoming ever more complex. As a result, the capability of the network has never before been under such scrutiny. It is the backbone of our progress towards security of supply and a low carbon economy. The Government has recognised via EN-1 and EN-5 that the development of an electricity network which is both robust and fit for these new demands is crucial.