Westminster Hall Debate on Pylons & Upgrades to the National Grid

May 7, 2024 | Cumulative Impact, Environment / Net Zero, National Grid, Network Design, News, Politics, Technology, Uncategorized

The debate was called by Matt Warman MP (Conservative, Boston and Skegness)
WATCH the excellent speeches by Wera Hobhouse HERE and by Therese Coffey HERE
Key Points:
  • There is virtual unanimity amongst all the MPs who spoke that the current upgrade plans need to be revised (regardless of area and party).
  • They noted the lack of transparency surrounding the plans in their respective areas.
  • They noted that there is a significant amount of opposition against plans for new pylons etc.
  • They all noted that more elegant solutions such as an offshore grid and underground cabling exist.
  • The map HERE shows that these energy projects to upgrade the grid are affecting the East of England, Wales, and Scotland.
  • All MPs are worried that the current plans for the National Grid will harm communities, endanger food security, and harm tourism (vital industries for these rural areas).
  • Wera Hobhouse MP quoted SEAS’ Britain’s Winning Solution Paper at length.
  • Therese Coffey spoke well, mentioning the people of Friston and the need to connect offshore energy to brownfield sites.
  • The Government Whip repeated the lines we have been hearing for a while. No major revelations. He did note however, that the Government does see that an offshore grid will form part of the energy infrastructure/transmission mix, and that innovation in cabling design is underway.
In all, 13 MPs spoke:
  1. Matt Warman MP (Conservative, Boston and Skegness)
  2. Wera Hobhouse MP (Liberal Democrats, Bath)
  3. Therese Coffey MP (Conservative, Suffolk Coastal)
  4. Jonathan Edwards MP (Independent (formerly Plaid Cymru), Carmarthen East and Dinefwr)
  5. Virginia Corsbie MP (Conservative, Ynys Mon)
  6. Nia Griffith MP (Labour, Llanelli)
  7. James Wild MP (Conservative, North West Norfolk)
  8. Jaime Stone MP (Liberal Democrats, Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross)
  9. Sir Bernard Jenkin MP (Conservative, Harwich and North Essex)
  10. Ben Lake MP (Plaid Cymru, Ceredigion)
  11. Sir John Hayes MP, (Conservative, South Holland and The Deepings)
  12. Dave Doogan MP, (SNP, Angus)
  13. Dr Alan Whithead MP (Labour, Southampton Test)
The Government was represented by Mark Flecther MP (Bolsover) who is an Assistant Whip.
Please see HERE a map that shows the distribution of the constituencies that the MPs were speaking on behalf of.