The UK government has given its approval to plans by Drax to convert two of its coal-fired power generating units in England to gas firing.
The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy went against the advice of the UK’s Planning Inspectorate to grant permission for the project, which will comprise the installation of up to four new combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) units at Drax power station in northern England.
Drax said that the project would enable it to deliver more reliable and flexible, high efficiency generation and help the UK to transition to net zero carbon emissions by 2050. It must secure a capacity market agreement to underpin the investment needed to develop the project, it added.
In a statement, Drax said: “If developed, 1.8 GW of new capacity would be available at Drax from October 2023. This could help to displace less efficient and higher carbon emitting power stations, enabling further decarbonisation of the UK’s power system.”