Engie to close 1GW Rugeley coal-fired power station


RugeleyRugeley Power Station looks set to close within the next few months, taking a further 1GW off UK power capacity.

Owner Engie (formerly known as GDF Suez) made the announcement yesterday citing deteriorating market conditions.

The firm left room for the coal plant to play a role in providing back-up power. David Alcock, CEO of the firm’s UK energy infrastructure division, said it would keep “all options for the power station under review”.

See the full announcement below:

ENGIE is today announcing that its 1,000 MW Rugeley Power Station in Staffordshire is expected to cease market operations in early summer 2016 due to the deterioration in market conditions for UK coal-fired power generation.

This closure will potentially lead to the loss of 150 jobs, subject to the outcome of an employee consultation exercise, and any further discussions with government bodies. During the consultation period, ENGIE will seek to identify redeployment opportunities elsewhere across the business, in line with the Group’s ongoing commitment to employees. A number of ongoing roles are expected to be required to support decommissioning and redevelopment of the site.

Unfortunately market conditions for UK coal plant have deteriorated rapidly in recent years, as a result of a continued fall in power prices on the back of commodity market decline, and increases in carbon costs. Under such conditions, there is no prospect of the power station recovering its future operating costs.

ENGIE remains one of the UK’s largest independent power producers and will continue to invest in its energy and services capabilities as a long-term committed partner for the UK.

David Alcock, CEO of ENGIE’s Energy Infrastructure division in the UK, said: “It is with deep regret that we have had to make this decision at Rugeley. Our priority now is to support the employees and help them through this period. We implemented a number of changes at Rugeley a year ago in order to help maintain operations at the site but a combination of falling prices and the impact of various market changes has now made this unviable.

“We will of course keep all options for the power station under review, and will maintain dialogue with all stakeholders as we proceed with the employee consultation process. I would personally like to thank everyone at Rugeley for their contribution to our business and for their loyal service to the Power Station.”

Related stories:

National Grid buys 3.6GW back-up power to meet winter demand

UK facing blackouts when coal plants close, engineers warn

UK to lose 2GW of capacity as Eggborough consults on closure

Capacity auction fails to incentivise new gas plant

Flexitricity warns on transitional capacity market as Npower plots supermarket sweep

‘A five year old can see the capacity market is anticompetitive’

Government axes £1bn CCS fund

Drax to halt CCS investment

Rudd confirms coal hard stop by 2025

No CCS, no heavy industry, MPs warned

Free download: Demand side response report 2015

National Grid plots superfast grid balancing service

National Grid plays down blackout fears but calls for more demand response

National Grid: No margin? No sweat

Lord Redesdale ‘puts money on brownouts or blackouts by year end’

Utilitywise bets against Lord Redesdale on blackout risk

National Grid must simplify demand response to bring in UK businesses

Smart grids ‘require local control and businesses must play or pay’

National Grid launches major demand side push

National Grid ‘delighted’ with demand response but warns over winter tightness

Is Triad past its peak?

National Grid urges major energy users to provide demand response for winter peak, may pay more

UK firms with CHP facilities could be paid to stop exporting power

National grid urges big firms to offer demand side response, may pay more

Free download: Directors’ Energy Report 2016

Click here to see if you qualify for a free subscription to the print magazine, or to renew.

Follow us at @EnergystMedia. For regular bulletins, sign up for the free newsletter.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here