ESB seeking backers for 1600 MW UK gas-fired power plant 

Posted: April 2, 2017 by oldbrew in Energy
Tags: ,

Knottingley is next door to the recently closed Ferrybridge C coal-fired power station [credit: Google maps]

If (as stated below) the UK’s electricity reserve margin fell to a feeble 0.1% this winter, now seems like a good time to get some new reliable power generation organised.

The ESB is planning a $1bn (€1bn) power plant in the UK and seeking an equity partner to help build the huge 1,600 megawatt facility, reports PEI.

The plant earmarked for Knottingley in Yorkshire would be one of Britain’s biggest, if it goes ahead. The company has already secured planning permission on the 50-acre site.

The Irish Independent reports that investment bank Nomura has been hired by the ESB to find a partner for the new gas-fired power station development, code-named Project Knight Rider.

Speaking to the Irish Independent earlier this month, group finance director Pat Fenlon said it would be the end of the year at the earliest before a decision would be made about when the project will actually proceed as the UK government doesn’t hold its next annual capacity auction until the end of this year.

Those auctions are held to ensure that the UK has adequate power supplies during winter periods, when demand peaks. The ESB has told potential investors that the UK will need new gas-fired power stations to take up the slack as about 20 GW of coal-fired and nuclear-powered electricity generation is shut down by 2025.

It has also told likely backers that the UK’s electricity reserve margin fell from about 18pc in 2011 to just 0.1pc during the winter that has just ended, before the use of emergency supplementary balancing reserves.

According to industry publication ‘SparkSpread’, which first reported that the ESB is now seeking an equity partner for Knottingley, the utility is also in talks with General Electric for the supply of two 800-MW turbines for the project.

Source: ESB seeking backers for 1600 MW UK gas-fired power plant – Power Engineering International
– – –
Talkshop note: the successful ‘Knight Rider’ TV series is described as ‘A lone crimefighter battles the forces of evil’. Interesting choice of project name 😉

  1. AlecM says:

    Won’t ESB have to install CCS?

  2. AlecM says:

    Or does ESB know that CCS is no longer mandatory?

  3. oldbrew says:

    Looks like gas or diesel if coal is off the agenda. If they put obstacles in the way of gas it could mean more diesel.

  4. ivan says:

    It would appear that the UK needs a level playing field for the supply of electricity, one in which all the suppliers are contracted to supply x gigawatt hours per week at price y. If they can’t supply that then they are fined double the price of the shortfall, if they generate more, tough luck, they don’t get paid for it.

    I know this sounds hard but it is the only way to get a reliable electricity supply at reasonable cost.

  5. Bloke down the pub says:

    Pity it’s not on top of a shale gas deposit, as it’d be difficult for protesters to stop development in an area like that.