E.On is to close down its Kingsnorth 1940 MW coal-fired power station in the UK and withdraw an application to build two new advanced clean coal generating units at the same site.

The Germany-based utility says that the power plant in Kent, southeast England, will cease operations in March 2013 in line with the requirements of the EU’s Large Combustion Plant Directive (LCPD) legislation. It has not ruled out the possibility of building new units at Kingsnorth in the future.

Last year E.On commissioned a new gas-fired combined heat and power plant on the Isle of Grain. It had also developed plans for a 1600 MW supercritical coal-fired power plant equipped with carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology at Kingsnorth.

The Kingsnorth CCS project was one of two projects shortlisted by the UK government in the first round of its CCS competition, but E.On withdrew its participation in the contest in 2010 when it became clear that it would not be able to complete the project within the government’s timetable.

Kingsnorth was originally commissioned in 1970. The LCPD requires coal fired power plants to either retrofit emission control technology, or take ‘opted out’ status and close down after generating for 20 000 hours reckoned from 1 January 2008.