Plans for a biomass power station in Portsmouth Naval Base


Plans for a biomass power station in Portsmouth Naval Base


In collaboration with the council, the navy is planning to build a heat and power plant to satisfy the needs of the two new Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers.

The first of the warships is to be launched in 2016.

According to the Ministry of Defence, no firm decision has been taken and other power alternatives are also under consideration.

An MOD spokesman stated: “MOD is working with Portsmouth City Council to scope the full range of options for meeting our future power requirements. No decisions have yet been taken.”

Portsmouth City Council leader, Gerald Vernon-Jackson, said: “It’s more sustainable and makes more sense for them to have control of it, it may well be cheaper and it will create more jobs.

“The thing I support is whether there is enough power in Portsmouth.

“When modern warships turn up in Portsmouth they tap into the electricity mains and they take a huge amount of power.”

He added: “If we don’t have a new power station in the dockyard, when the aircraft carriers come in and are plugged into the main supply, Portsmouth will go dark. We have to have a new power station or we will have to put extra pylons on Portsdown Hill.”

Two years ago Helius Energy’s plans to build a £300m biomass plant at Southampton Docks sparked a great deal of controversy.

The plans for Southampton resulted in protests from people living in communities nearby who felt the new plant would cause such problems as traffic, noise and pollution.

According to the energy company’s proposal for the Southampton plant, it would use "sustainably-sourced wood fuel in the form of virgin wood fibre, recycled wood and energy crops together with other biomass material including by-products from processing cereals and oilseeds, all supplied in the form of loose material, chips, pellets or briquettes, that qualify as renewable fuels under the provisions of the Renewables Obligation 2009."

Photo: Daily Echo