HC Deb 23 April 1968 vol 763 cc19-20
21. Sir Knox Cunningham

asked the Minister of Power whether he will state the cost per mile since devaluation of installing overhead and underground cables, respectively, to carry electricity; and the approximate total mileage in Great Britain to date of such overhead and underground cables, respectively.

Mr. Freeson

As the Answer contains a lot of figures I will, with permission, circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Sir Knox Cunningham

Is it not possible to make better use of underground cables in areas of great natural beauty? Surely the very high cost which has already been given could be reduced when the lines are in the rural areas?

Mr. Freeson

I am not quite sure of the point of that supplementary question in relation to the Question on the Order Paper. The industry has a pretty good record in this respect. Every effort is made, within the bounds of economic considerations, to pay attention to amenity aspects of cables.

The following is the information: Costs per mile vary according to voltage, but between 11 kV single circuit and 400 kV double circuit range from£1,100 to£5,000 for overhead lines and from£5,000 to£930,000 for underground cables. The circuit mileages in England and Wales at 31st March, 1967, for overhead lines and underground cables are 106,752 and 66,005 respectively for voltages above 650. For voltages at and below 650 separate figures for overhead and underground construction are not available and the combined total is 157,339 circuit lines.
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