SSE plans £7.5b Capex by 2025, reduce 60% carbon footprints

British public-quoted energy company, SSE Plc, plans to invest up to £7.5billion in capital expenditure (Capex) five years from now till 2025.   

 It also targets to cut the carbon intensity of electricity generated by at least 60%, run-off to 2030, while also accommodating up to 10 million electric vehicles, its Sustainability Summary indicates.

The report, titled: Powering Change, comes ahead of its Annual Report 2021 and Sustainability Report 2021, to be published on June 18. 

The company further plans to treble its renewable energy output as well as championing fair tax and real living wage.

Specifically, the six-page summary revealed that SSE’s already reduced its carbon footprints in generated electricity by 11% between 2019/2020 and 2020/2021. 

To accommodate the 10 million vehicles, SSE intends to build electricity network flexibility and infrastructure in Great Britain, and also contribute about 30TWh yearly to renewable output. 

In the area of tax and real living wage, the company targets to “be the leading company in the UK and Ireland championing these goals.   

 As a business focused on delivering net zero, SSE expressed its commitment to being transparent on its sustainability impacts and progress.

It said: “The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are the blueprint for addressing global challenges, including climate change, and SSE’s four 2030 business goals are aligned to the UN’s SDGs most material to its business.”

The short report provides a summary of SSE’s sustainability impacts over 2020/21, which highlights include:

Reduction in the carbon intensity of SSE’s generated electricity to the lowest levels since SSE’s records began;

Good progress on key renewable projects, with 5.8GW of renewables currently in construction and operation (based on SSE equity share); and,

By the 10th year, SSE will calculate its economic contribution to the UK and Ireland, with a contribution of around £100billion (in current prices) across these economies over the last decade.

The Summary Report is divided into five segments including: providing solutions for people and plant; taking meaningful climate action; providing affordable and clean energy; investing in industry innovation and infrastructure; and committing to decent work and economic growth. 

In a breakdown of the Capex, the report said SSE “is committed to investing in net zero and plans about £7.5billion capex plan across the five years to March 2025 is on track, with construction well under way at flagship SSE Renewables projects. SSE remains committed to delivering this investment plan and in 2020/21, its investment and capital expenditure totalled £909.4million. 

“SSE’s net zero aligned assets and pipeline have considerable potential for future growth above and beyond this plan and details of potential opportunities are outlined in SSE’s Full-year Results Statement 2020/21.”

In terms of electricity transmission network has a vital role to play in transporting this to demand centres, particularly further south. “Its business plan reached a final settlement of nearly £2.2billion of approved infrastructure investment between 2021 and 2026. 

“In addition, Ofgem has also approved the construction of the Shetland HVDC link that connects new renewable generation and secures Shetland’s supply. Construction has begun and the project remains on track for completion in 2024. The project is currently expected to entail around £650million of investment.

SSEN Transmission had its own series of carbon targets approved by the SBTi in August 2020, making it the first electricity networks company globally to receive external accreditation for a science-based target in line with a 1.5°C pathway. 

“In addition, in January 2021, SSEN Distribution became the first UK Distribution Network Operator to commit publicly to setting science-based targets, which will be announced as part of its upcoming draft business plan for RIIO-ED2 in July 2021,” the summary said.

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