Iceland’s national grid company believes that new power lines across the highlands are the best option for strengthening the country’s distribution network over the coming years, according to a new strategic plan introduced this week.
RÚV reports that Landsnet updates its strategic plan every year, which is both a long-term ten-year plan for its distribution network and a three-year plan for the company’s own management and direction.
The company introduced its distribution options at an open meeting on Friday, with the two options presented being either new power lines over the central highlands, or major improvements to its current lines around the perimeter of Iceland. The company introduced nine different scenarios built on a combination of new lines and voltage increases on existing lines.
Balancing the environmental impacts, energy distribution security, infrastructure security and other factors, the company believes a new 220 kV line between Blanda and Fljótsdalur and over the highlands.
To reduce visual impacts of the network over Sprengisandur, the company proposes possibly laying a 50 km stretch of underground cables.
The report states that all available options have negative or very negative environmental impacts in some areas, but the new highland line would have the lowest overall impact.
Representatives of nature protection organizations at the open meeting expressed extreme doubts about the plan and the reasoning behind it.