Italy and Greece are preparing to expand their electricity interconnection capacity to 1.5 GW by laying two cables of 1 GW in total on the seabed. Terna, the Italian transmission system operator, expects the investment to reach EUR 750 million.
Terna is conducting a public consultation procedure about its plan to install two submarine high-voltage direct current (HVDC) cables together with its Greek counterpart, the Independent Power Transmission Operator (IPTO or Admie). They aim to boost the interconnection between the two countries. The GR.ITA 2 line would go from Melendugno, on the Adriatic coast in Apulia, under the Strait of Otranto and Ionian Sea to Thesprotia (Tesprozia), located across the way from the southern tip of the island of Corfu.
The subsea section is planned to be 250 kilometers long. On the Italian side, the interconnector would also have an underground alternating current (AC) segment of 50 kilometers, to Galatina. It is the site of a future conversion station, according to Terna. Italy’s transmission also said system operator said it expects to invest EUR 750 million.
GR.ITA 2 would expand the total capacity on the border to 1.5 GW. The two companies commissioned the existing 400 kV interconnector in 2001. It runs through Otranto to Galatina. On the other side, the line lands in Aetos and continues to Arachthos.
Terna: Dialogue with institutions, associations and especially citizens will be essential for the project
Terna is holding a series of meetings with the representatives of institutions and local communities in seven affected municipalities in the province of Lecce. Dialogue with institutions, associations and especially citizens will be essential for the project, the company stressed.
The TSO already conducted a voluntary consultation last year. It said the process helped it prepare proposals for the locations of the transformer, the underground cables and the landing site.
The requirements that the company has decided to comply with voluntarily will allow for lower carbon dioxide emissions and energy consumption, the ability to choose locations that are structurally accessible and to promote products for recycling and reuse, according to the update.