The Government last week approved three projects totalling 2,140MW to convert coal and oil-fired power stations to dual-firing with gas.
The consents take to 17 the number of gas-fired schemes approved since the Government imposed a tighter planning regime for such projects in October 1998.
The projects – at Cottam, Nottinghamshire (1,000MW), Rugeley B, Staffordshire (1,000MW) and Indian Queens, Cornwall (140MW) – almost triple the new gas-fired capacity given the go ahead to over 3,000MW.
Saving jobs and reducing emissions were the reasons given for granting the consents. But the Department of Trade and Industry said the stricter regime for gas-powered stations still stands.