Drax confirms Iberdrola talks; Total and SSE find new gas; Simec Atlantis plots new life for old coal


Drax has confirmed press reports that it is in talks to buy UK pumped storage, renewable hydro and gas-fired generation assets from Scottish Power parent company, Iberdrola.

 “The discussions are preliminary in nature and there can be no certainty of any agreement or the timing or terms of any such agreement,” it stated. “Any potential acquisition would be fully debt funded and subject to shareholder approval.”

Meanwhile Total announced a “major” gas discovery in the Greater Laggan area west of Shetland. It estimates recoverable gas of around a trillion cubic feet, or 10 billion therms. It holds a 60% stake in the Glendronach project, with SSE (20%) and Ineos (20%).

Elsewhere, posting losses of £9m for the year, Simec Atlantis gave further details of its planned conversion of Uskmouth coal power station to a 220MW plant that burns plastic waste pellets.

It will buy the pellets for £4/tonne and has agreements in place whereby it will sell up to 15MW per annum at £130/MWh via a fixed price PPA, and a route to market power purchase agreement containing a floor price of £30.90 per MW.

“By carrying out this conversion we believe we can create value for our shareholders whilst meeting a demand for secure baseload power, as other fossil fuel generators face closure,” said chairman John Neill.

“A successful conversion at Uskmouth can form the blueprint for other power stations that otherwise face obsolescence, providing instead an extended period of valuable service in compliance with up-to-date emissions regulations.”

Related stories:

Simec hires Drax expert to convert Uskmouth

Drax powers up pellet production

Drax to convert fourth unit to biomass

Drax revisits carbon capture and storage

Simec Atlantis steps up Uskmouth conversion plans

Think big to make tidal power cheaper than Hinkley C, says Atlantis boss

Pennon: Only upside from energy from waste as demand outstrips supply

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  1. Drax is often mentioned in the media for it’s sustainable fuel source credentials.

    However, I am not convinced that burning bio-mass [wood chips] has no NET environmental impact, where the sources are forests being cut down thousands of miles away, no matter how many new trees are planted to replace those cut down .
    Haven power [a Drax subsidiary ] claims it can deliver 100% Renewable Energy. That maybe true, but where do you place the level of climate impact?


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