Europe’s power transmission system operators plan to spend EUR 104bn in the next decade on overhauling their electricity systems.

Around 51 500km of power lines will either be refurbished or built from scratch in a package of more than 100 projects unveiled today by the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E).

Germany leads the way on investment, with projects worth EUR 30bn due to go ahead in a bid to accommodate renewable energy in the wake of the German government’s decision to withdraw from nuclear power.

Next is the UK with a schedule of works costing EUR 19bn which is intended to harness power from offshore wind farms.

However, ENTSO-E has found that one in three planned investments are experiencing delays in implementation due to long permitting processes and the group is urging the European Commission to allow fast-tracking of transmission infrastructure projects.

Jean Verseille, chairman of Entso-e’s system development committee, said: “Projects are delayed in almost every part of Europe. Permitting is still the most challenging issue for us.”