MP Penny Mordaunt wants the £ 1.2bn project to be halted after a French minister yesterday threatened to take the subsequent drastic measure on the fishery.
If approved, the Aquind interconnector would bring electricity from the mainland to Britain via submarine cables, coming ashore at Eastney, Portsmouth and going north to Lovedean.
Portsmouth North MP Ms Mordaunt has written to Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng – who will make the decision on the plans – saying they should be stopped.
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Talk to The newsMs. Mordaunt said: “Recent events are further proof that interconnection is not in our national interest.
“It will make us less resilient, it is a strategic error and it will potentially undermine future negotiations that we might wish to have with the EU and certainly with the Member States. “
Ms Mordaunt said the threat formulated by French Maritime Affairs Minister Annick Girardin was “grim”.
Royal Navy offshore patrol vessels HMS Tamar and HMS Severn were deployed to the Channel Islands on Thursday as 100 fishing boats were set to demonstrate in Jersey – raising fears of a blockade.
French fishing boats Photo: Gary Grimshaw / Bailiwick Express / PA Wire
Row explodes on the use of Portsmouth street artist’s work My Dog Sighs in the background…
Jersey Electricity has warned that 95% of its power comes from submarine cables from France.
Aquind said if built, its interconnect could transmit five percent of Britain’s total annual electricity use – enough for five million homes.
In her letter, Ms Mordaunt, who opposed Aquind in the public scrutiny by the Planning Inspectorate, said: “It will be said that the EU could not prevent a French energy company from selling to the Kingdom. United, but increasing our dependence on French nuclear power increases the likelihood that it will become politicized and involved in possible future discussions, especially on fisheries.
“Doing this sounds like a bad idea and I’m sure the British fishermen wouldn’t support it. “
The row began after the island implemented new requirements under the UK-EU trade deal for boats to submit evidence of their past fishing activities in order to receive a license to operate in Jersey waters.
Ms Girardin told the French parliament that “retaliatory measures” could be taken, including reducing the power of Crown dependencies.
Aquind and its manager Alexander Temerko made donations to the Conservative Party and MPs, prompting Labor to say there was a “serious conflict of interest”.
Indeed, Mr. Kwarteng will make the decision to grant or deny the Development Consent Order for Aquind’s plans.
Aquind has been asked to comment on how he would handle any potential future orders from French authorities to cut power to Britain.
A spokesperson for Aquind said: “Aquind Interconnector is currently at the authorization stage in the UK and France.
“France is a reliable energy partner for the United Kingdom, as evidenced by decades of cooperation between the two countries on the IFA and IFA2 interconnections and by an important role that EDF plays in the British energy market. is committed to building an interconnection with France.
“Once operational, Aquind Interconnector will contribute significantly to the decarbonization goals of France, the UK and the EU.
“It will help better integrate renewable generation from the two countries and provide essential services to the two power grids. “
History of Aquind’s plans in Portsmouth
OPPOSITION to Aquind’s plans grew rapidly over the four years they were first discussed publicly.
In 2017, the company first revealed its ambition to bring submarine cables ashore from France to Eastney.
Then City Council chief Donna Jones initially said the cable would be “essential,” while Lib Dem chief Gerald Vernon-Jackson said it shouldn’t cause much trouble. The two now oppose the plans.
But an uproar has erupted over plans to tear apart the eastern route to install the cables, which will now include a fiber-optic communication element.
The company has changed part of its route to avoid this, but will continue to run along the road and through the playgrounds of Milton Common and Farlington.
In 2018, some 1,500 residents feared losing their homes when Aquind sent out land questionnaires about mortgages and people’s interest in the land.
Grassroots Let’s Stop Aquind campaigns last year joined political opposition to the plans. Campaigners fear a disruption in Milton’s remit, but the firm has said there won’t be any.
The two Portsmouth MPs, Stephen Morgan and Penny Mordaunt, are not happy with the candidacy.
The company’s submission for a Development Consent Order has been reviewed by a Planning Inspectorate panel and will be decided by Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng.
Landowners who risk violating their rights have also resisted forced acquisition.