Risk assessment for a UK pan-European Supergrid

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Interconnected electricity networks, Supergrids, are being considered to help tackle some of the current global energy challenges such as rising CO2 emissions and the complete reliance on renewables. However, there are a range of obstacles associated with developing interconnections, not least the uncertainties associated with selecting appropriate countries with which to make interconnection. The process of identifying and then assessing various risks for these interconnections can be considered to be an important factor in mitigating and controlling their impact from within and outside national and international boundaries. To this end, this paper presents a risk-based framework to identify and assess the risks associated with developing new interconnections with other countries. Expert's knowledge and information available from the literature were used to identify 19 construction and 11 maintenance risks and to rank them using a ‘risk’ matrix. The usefulness of the approach is demonstrated using the UK as the case study. The analysis of the identified risks showed that regulatory framework, changes in energy policy and weak onshore grids require special attention and that, of those countries considered, Ireland was deemed to have the lowest risk for interconnection with the UK. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1564-1578
JournalInternational Journal of Energy Research
Issue number11
Early online date14 Jul 2015
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2015


  • interconnections
  • risk assessment
  • trading electricity
  • renewables
  • risk identification
  • risk semi-quantification


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