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Green light for Northumberland biomass power station

Permission has been granted for a 100MW biomass power station at Blyth Harbour, Northumberland.

Developer North Blyth Energy estimates the plant will provide enough electricity for 170,000 homes per year. This is the equivalent to all the households in Northumberland, according to the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC).

The plant will use wood-based biomass fuels that come in the form of wood chip, pellet or briquette, said the developer. These are produced from non-recyclable waste wood, from sources that may otherwise be landfilled.

Sustainably-sourced domestic or imported forestry material and dedicated energy crops will also be used.

Project manager of RES UK, the parent company of North Blyth Energy, Chris Lawson commented: “It is a welcome confirmation of the Government’s support for sustainable, low carbon energy projects which will make a significant contribution towards meeting the UK’s legally binding 2020 renewable energy targets.

A DECC spokesperson said: “Sustainably sourced biomass has an important role to play as part of a balanced energy mix, enhancing energy security and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

“The plant will be eligible for incentive support under the Renewables Obligation (RO), but not under Contracts for Difference (CfDs), which come into force in 2017.

DECC recently limited support for new-build dedicated biomass to a total capacity cap of 400MW.

  • In a recent interview with MRW Renewable Energy Association (REA) chief executive Gaynor Hartnell said that it was “shocking” that the Government was taking away incentives for dedicated new-build biomass.

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