Power stations approved

Energy and climate change minister Mike O’Brien has granted consent for three new power stations capable of providing approximately four million homes with electricity.

The new gas-fired power stations, to be constructed at Pembroke, King’s Lynn and Hatfield, will produce around 4GW.

Powerfuel Power will construct a 900MW integrated coal gasification gas-fired power station at Hatfield, Yorkshire, while Centrica Leasing (KL) will build a 1,020MW combined cycle gas turbine power station at King’s Lynn, Norfolk. A 2,000MW combined cycle gas turbine power station will be built by RWE npower in Pembroke, south west Wales.

Each power station agreed during the planning process that they will have the necessary land available to retrofit a carbon capture and storage plant for future use.

Consent was also given to build a second phase at Hatfield consisting of an integrated coal gasification combined cycle power station, which will use coal to produce hydrogen to fuel the station.

As part of the phase two process of producing the gas, Powerfuel has applied to capture and remove the carbon. This could involve piping it off-shore for long-term storage and possibly using a small volume for commercial purposes. Operation of this second phase is conditional on the company submitting further evidence to ministers demonstrating the carbon can be stored safely.