The Taiwanese Ambassador to the UK has visited the country’s largest power station to find out more about how it has transformed itself to become the biggest decarbonisation project in Europe. The visit was organised by Nigel Adams MP who was keen to demonstrate Drax’s innovative focus on renewable energy.
Ambassador David Y.L. Lin of the Taipei Representative Office visited Drax Power Station in Selby, North Yorkshire to meet with Drax Power CEO Andy Koss and MP for Selby and Ainsty, Nigel Adams MP, who explained how Drax, which was once the UK’s largest coal-fired power station and now produces enough renewable electricity to power four million homes.
He and the delegation had a tour of the power station and learned how Drax upgraded four of its six generating units to use sustainable biomass instead of coal to become the UK’s biggest single site renewable power generator.
In 2018, Drax signed up to the government’s Powering Past Coal Alliance, a UK-Canadian initiative which seeks to end the use of coal by 2030 in developed countries as part of efforts to tackle climate change.
Andy Koss, Drax Power CEO, said:
“We know that coal does not have a role to play in a low carbon future. By upgrading two thirds of the power station to run on sustainable biomass, we’re delivering carbon savings of more than 80% compared to coal.
“We want to share some of the engineering knowledge gained from successfully upgrading the power station to use biomass in the hope we can remove more coal from the system globally.”
He added: “We’re committed to reducing carbon emissions further and are piloting Bioenergy Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) technology, which could enable Drax to become the world’s first carbon negative power station.”
Nigel Adams, MP for Selby and Aintsy said:
“Drax is a key economic asset both in Selby and the wider region. It is vital to the local community, directly employing 900 people, supporting 5,700 jobs through its supply chains and generating £600m a year for the northern economy.
“It is looking to the future both in terms of supporting education and skills through community outreach work, as well as exploring opportunities to use new technologies which will enable the power station to innovate and grow.”
Drax is progressing plans for repowering its two remaining coal units with high efficiency gas power generation and battery storage.
It welcomed more than 12,500 visitors to the power station last year. As a member of the Powering Past Coal Alliance, Drax is committed to the development of a low carbon future globally.
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Drax Group’s ambition is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future. Its 2,600-strong staff operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production.
Drax owns and operates a portfolio of flexible, low carbon and renewable electricity generation assets across Britain. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies six percent of the country’s electricity needs.
Having converted two thirds of Drax Power Station to use sustainable biomass instead of coal it has become the UK’s biggest renewable power generator and the largest decarbonisation project in Europe.
Its pumped storage, hydro and energy from waste assets in Scotland include Cruachan Power Station – a flexible pumped storage facility within the hollowed-out mountain Ben Cruachan. It also owns and operates four gas power stations in England.
Drax owns two B2B energy supply businesses:
- Haven Power, based in Ipswich, supplies electricity and energy services to large Industrial and Commercial sector businesses.
- Opus Energy, based in Oxford, Northampton and Cardiff, provides electricity, energy services and gas to small and medium sized (SME) businesses.
Drax owns and operates three pellet mills in the US South which manufacture compressed wood pellets (biomass) produced from sustainably managed working forests. These pellet mills supply around 20% of the biomass used by Drax Power Station in North Yorkshire to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.
For more information visit www.drax.com