Redes Energéticas Nacionais (REN) has completed its project to strengthen the electricity grid between the substations of Falagueira (Nisa) and Castelo Branco. Costing around EUR 12 million, this investment enhances the safety and transmission capacity of the electricity supply in the Beira Baixa region, namely in the north of the Portalegre district and the south of the Castelo Branco district.
The new line will function at 150 kV, but is technically prepared for 400 kV, and consists of 114 very high voltage posts along a stretch measuring 46.5 kilometres.
The investment will increase the capacity to transport renewable energies (hydro and wind generated) being produced or which is planned in this region, such as the Wind Farms of Gardunha, Pinhal Interior and Penamacor and the Hydroelectric Power Plants of Fratel on the River Tagus and Pracana on the River Ocreza.
As well as the improvements to the line, investments have also been made in the Castelo Branco and Falagueira substations, which were enlarged and fitted with the equipment needed to connect to the new line.
REN Investment Manager Albino Marques pointed out the importance of this REN project which has “the goal of increasing the capacity to receive the renewable energy produced at high quality and without restrictions.”
Within the scope of this project, a birdlife monitoring plan was put in place in order to assess the impact and the effectiveness of the signalling positioned on the cables.
Studies carried out throughout the project particularly focused on minimising the environmental impacts, helping to preserve the nature of the region, such as the Portas de Ródão Natural Monument protected area and the habitats of several protected flora and fauna species (eagle owl, black stork, griffon vulture, Egyptian vulture and Bonelli’s eagle).