Powergen plans £1bn 'super' coal-fired station

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The Independent Online

Powergen, the energy supplier owned by E.ON of Germany, unveiled plans yesterday to invest £1bn in the UK's first "super" coal-fired power station to try to curb carbon emissions.

The company expects to apply for formal consent next month to build two new 800 megawatt units at its Kingsnorth station in Kent using "super-critical" technology. They would replace the station's four existing units from 2015, enabling Kingsnorth to operate at much higher levels of efficiency while producing fewer carbon emissions.

Powergen said the two new units would reduce carbon emissions by almost 2 million tonnes compared to the existing station, and produce enough electricity to power 1.5 million homes.

The new units would also be built with carbon capture in mind so that if the technology became viable, emissions could be reduced to zero. In addition, the new station will not require unsightly cooling towers and will feature equipment to remove all sulphur dioxide emissions and enable the burning of biomass alongside coal.

Powergen has begun statutory consultation on the units and is conducting a feasibility study into building a clean coal station on the Lincolnshire coast.