Government backing has been confirmed for a £2Bn carbon capture scheme to build a new coal fuelled power station - that will pipe its CO2 emissions for storage under the North Sea - with the award of a Front End Engineering and Design contract.
Up to 2,000 jobs could be created in Yorkshire by the eventual project which could be ready by 2018. The FEED contract value has not been announced as a similar project is under negotiation with Shell in Scotland, but the work is thought to be worth up to £100 million.
The contract was won by Capture Power Limited, a consortium of Alstom, Drax and BOC, for the White Rose Carbon Capture and Storage project based adjacent to the Drax power station near Selby, Yorkshire, which has now been partially converted to a biomass power plant. Energy Secretary Ed Davey announced the award for the White Rose scheme when he opened the £700 million biomass plant, which will use mostly wood pulp pellets to fuel three of its six generating units by 2016, yesterday.
The contract award is a major step in the UK’s Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) Commercialisation Programme. It will involve a two year programme of detailed engineering, planning and financial development to finalise and de-risk the project ahead of securing financial close and start of construction.
Capture Power general manager Leigh Hackett said: “The White Rose project has great potential to demonstrate oxyfuel combustion CCS technology which will benefit other projects in the UK and overseas. It also highlights the strategic strength of the Yorkshire and Humber region as a hub for CCS, driving the formation of a cluster for CO2 transportation and storage.”
The proposed 426MW power plant would burn coal and have the ability to co-fire biomass and meet the energy needs of the equivalent of over 630,000 homes. Some 90% of all of the CO2 produced will be captured and transported by pipeline for permanent storage underneath the seabed.