- The NordLink slogan and communication concept for the German-Norwegian subsea cable for electricity transmission receive the international German PR award
- Strategic project: With the exchange of German wind power and Norwegian hydropower, the energy transition is going European
Bayreuth/Stuttgart/Oslo. The transmission system operator TenneT has been recognised with the renowned international German PR award for their innovative public relations work on the energy transition project NordLink. “The award recognises the development and positive implementation of our NordLink slogan ‘the green cable’, which speaks for itself and runs through all of our communication measures, enhancing them emotionally in a positive way. We positioned this international project for the exchange of German wind power and Norwegian hydropower as a lighthouse project and declared: the energy transition is going European,” said TenneT CEO Manon van Beek.
The jury of high-ranking communication experts from the German business community particularly appreciated how well the relevance of NordLink for the public, policymakers and media has been demonstrated as well as the positive visibility of the project. The award was issued in the category “strategic communication” for medium- and long-term communication projects of strategic significance by the Deutsche Public Relations Gesellschaft (DPRG) in Stuttgart.
To achieve broad communication of the NordLink message, TenneT actively makes use of all project milestones – even beyond the practice of engaging in dialogue with citizens and local residents (Bürgerdialog). From the initial planning to the construction work and the achievement of the intermediate project goals, stakeholders and the media are offered a direct and immediate experience of the NordLink project. The focus here lies on a combination of personal and multimedia storytelling. TenneT's communication strategy was developed in close cooperation with Public Dialogue Consultants of the Berlin agency navos.
The jury was impressed by the fact that politicians and the media had positively received and disseminated the slogan "the green cable". NordLink attracted the attention of stakeholders in Germany, Norway and the Netherlands with a concerted, positive agenda setting. In their tribute, the jury stressed that NordLink - unlike many energy projects - "is not present with negative headlines. The energy transition urgently needs positive signals and good news. NordLink has delivered".
NordLink connects two perfectly complementary systems for the exchange of renewable energy: German wind and solar power on the one side, and Norwegian hydropower on the other. The power line connects the capacities of Norwegian hydropower plants with those of wind and solar farms in Germany. The Norwegian water reservoirs essentially function as ‘energy reservoirs’: the water inside them is retained when energy is imported from Germany, especially when Germany has a surplus of wind energy to offer.
In turn, they can come into play during peak consumption periods in Germany, and when there is little production from solar and wind power plants. Then Norwegian hydropower is transported to Germany.
German consumers can benefit from the positive effect on electricity prices resulting from the import of lower-priced hydropower. When limited activity of wind turbines and solar cells result in higher energy prices in Germany than in Norway, energy generated by Norwegian hydropower plants can be imported via NordLink. A considerable part of the socio-economic advantages of NordLink results from the profits generated by trading transmission capacity via the interconnector. These profits will be used to fund other grid projects or to lower energy rates.
The NordLink project will be implemented by the Norwegian TSO Statnett and DC Nordseekabel GmbH & Co. KG, each with 50% ownership. TenneT and KfW each have a 50% share in DC Nordseekabel. DC Nordseekabel is responsible for the construction and approvals on the German part of the project.
NordLink itself will be built as a direct current (DC) motorway without a ramp, i.e. as a point-to-point connection between the alternating current (AC) power grids in Germany and Norway. Due to the length of the route and the large transmission capacity, DC is used for efficient transmission with low losses. Both cables (positive and negative poles) are connected to converter stations at each end. The converter stations will be built in Wilster, Schleswig-Holstein, and Tonstad in Norway. At these locations, the current will be converted from DC to AC power (or vice versa, depending on the transmission direction) and fed into the German or Norwegian AC power transmission grid to supply homes and businesses with green electricity.
Facts and figures
623 km long, high-voltage direct current transmission (HVDC)
A capacity of 1,400 MW at ± 525 kV
Offshore: 516 km subsea cable
Onshore: 54 km of underground cable (Büsum – Wilster/Schleswig-Holstein) and a 53-km overhead line (Vollesfjord – Tonstad/NOR)
Grid connection points: the Wilster (GER) and Tonstad (NOR) substations
Commissioning in 2020
Further information is available at www.nordlink.eu (PR award photo credit: Uli Deck)