EAST LANCASHIRE residents are being asked to give their views on an planned £2 billion investment in the region's electricity network.

Electricity North West has already set out its draft plan on how intends to spend the money supporting the region's 'green future' and has spoken to over 18,000 people.

However, before the plans are submitted to energy regulator Ofgem, the company hopes that its customers can have their say once again through an online questionnaire.

Electricity North West chief executive Peter Emery said: “The challenge of delivering stretching environmental ambitions on net zero while keeping bills low and making sure we don’t leave anybody behind is tough.

“Our research has shown that 80 per cent of customers are willing to pay an additional £9.80 to achieve our ambitious proposals, but that means 20 per cent are not.

"We have worked hard to find a solution through innovation and efficiencies where we can deliver that high level of investment for just £2.14 extra a year on the average household bill.

“The result of that work would be to facilitate a greener, fairer, more prosperous and more connected future for our region but before we finalise our plan we want to get the views of our customers and stakeholders.

"We would encourage anybody to read through our plan and let us know what they think so we can refine it further.”

The company's current plan proposes to invest £1.97 billion between 2023 and 2028, which represents a 44 per cent increase on the current period, and aims to cut the number and duration of power cuts by 20 per cent.

The plans also include investment in the 57,000km of underground and overhead cables it takes to power the north west so that it is ready to cope with increased demand in line with the government’s target to cut carbon emissions by 68 per cent by 2030 and become a net zero carbon economy by 2050.

Officials say that the money will also help them to go even further in protecting the network from storms and floods, and continue increasing the capacity of the network so it can accommodate the predicted rise in demand from lower-carbon technologies like electric vehicles and heating.

It also commits to providing additional support for vulnerable customers.

However, before these plans are finalised and submitted to Ofgem on July 1, customers can have their say by going to www.enwl.co.uk/engagementhub.