Welsh Power is planning a 50 MW biomass plant at Newport Docks. Carron Engineering & Construction (CEC), Welsh Power’s power engineering subsidiary, will be leading the development.

The Nevis Power plant will employ the best available technology to comply with the requirements of its IPPC (Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control).

The plant will be designed to handle the combustion of pure biomass fuels comprising a mix of primarily wood chip and energy crops and will consume about 380 000 t/y of clean biomass, including energy crops.

A 12 acre brownfield site has been secured with Associated British Ports (ABP) at Newport Docks.

The location of the site is particularly advantageous for the delivery of biomass fuel, with Newport’s South Dock able to accommodate large shipments, up to 44 000 DWT.

The development is a response to the Welsh Assembly’s renewable energy recommendations and initiatives.

Project feasibility studies have been completed and it is expected that planning permission for the scheme will be submitted to Newport city council this summer.

Environmental consultants have been engaged and are currently undertaking the necessary investigations and assessments required to prepare and submit the environmental statement and planning application. The scoping document has been agreed with Newport city council and the consultation process is in progress. The planning application is scheduled for submission on or prior to August 2008.

Fuel sources and pre-qualification and assessment of fuel suppliers with capability to support the project are ongoing.

Basic plant engineering has started with the aim of providing process cycle definition, efficiency calculations and outline site design and proposals from key technology providers have been received and evaluated.

An indicative connection assessment has been received from Western Power Distribution and an instruction to proceed to a formal connection offer is being progressed. It is proposed that a connection is made to an existing 132 kV overhead line.