HC Deb 31 March 1993 vol 222 c274W
Mr. Beggs

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will require the regulator and Northern Ireland Electricity to obtain an independent cost/benefit study for Northern Ireland of all alternative power sources prior to awarding future power purchase agreements; and if he will require the most economic supply identified taking account of economic, social and environmental issues as well as security of supply to be purchased by Northern Ireland Electricity.

Mr. Atkins

The term under which NIE will award future power purchase agreements are governed by its licence which contains an economic purchasing obligation. In entering into any such agreement NIE will have to satisfy the Director General of Electricity Supply for Northern Ireland.

Mr. Stott

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what studies his Department has made of the impact on domestic electricity prices of the Scottish-Northern Ireland interconnector becoming operational; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Atkins

An economic evaluation of generating options was commissioned by the Department and this showed interconnection with Scotland to be the most attractive option available for meeting the need for new capacity in the late 1990s.

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