(This September 19 story corrects fourth paragraph to say plant will be in operation in 2022 not early 2022)
LONDON (Reuters) - The British government has approved plans by Drax to build a 90 million pound rapid response gas power station in south Wales, the energy company said on Thursday.
The 299 megawatt (MW) gas plant is designed to fire up rapidly and provide power as and when the grid needs, Drax said.
“Rapid response gas power stations are agile enough to ramp up quickly and support the grid at times of peak demand, making them highly complementary to intermittent renewable sources of power, like wind and solar,” Chief Executive Andy Koss said.
Drax said the Abergelli plant could begin generating power in 2022, although the decision to go forward with building would depend on it securing a subsidy under Britain’s capacity market.
Britain launched the power capacity market in 2014, offering to pay providers for making supplies available at short notice.
However, a European Union court ruling in November 2018 forced Britain to halt payments under the scheme pending a review.
Reporting by Sabina Zawadzki and Susanna Twidale; editing by David Evans