October 7, 2019 / 9:02 AM / 15 days ago

British government approves Drax gas conversion plans at power plant

LONDON (Reuters) - The British government has approved plans by Drax to convert up to two of the coal-fired generation units at its power station in north Yorkshire to gas-fired generation, the country’s planning inspectorate said.

Drax has already converted four of its six coal units at the plant near Selby to use biomass.

The two remaining units will be replaced with gas-fired power generation which will each have a capacity of up to 1.8 gigawatts.

Last year, environmental law firm ClientEarth submitted an objection to the planning inspectorate over Drax’s plans for the gas-fired power plant and the inspectorate recommended that the project was refused due to its contribution to greenhouse gas emissions.

However, the government said the gas-fired units would emit less carbon dioxide than coal-fired and some fossil fuel generation capacity is needed to provide back-up for intermittent renewables capacity.

Reporting by Nina Chestney, editing by Louise Heavens

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