The company will consult with local people and organisations before applying for permission to build the power station. The proposed project would support 150 jobs during the construction and commissioning period, and up to 15 new full time, skilled jobs when operational.
The proposed project would have low emissions and would help strengthen and secure the UK’s energy supply by providing back up to intermittent energy that is generated from renewable sources – primarily wind and solar. The power station and its related energy infrastructure would be designed to operate flexibly (i.e. not always running) and would produce electricity for no more than 1,500 hours per year.
Consultation is a very important part of the planning process and Abergelli Power will engage with local communities before applying for development consent to build the power station. An initial phase of public information events to introduce the project will be held at the following local venues:
- Thursday, June 19 at Forge Fach Community Resource Centre, Hebron Road, Clydach, Swansea, SA6 5 EJ between 3pm and 7pm;
- Friday, June 20 at Felindre Welfare Hall, Felindre, Swansea, SA5 7NA between 3pm and 7pm; and
- Saturday, June 21 at Tircoed Village Hall, Y Cyswllt, Tircoed SA4 9QZ between 10am and 1pm.
Members of the Abergelli Power project team will be on hand at these events to explain the how the proposals will be taken forward and how the consultation process is expected to evolve. Consultation with local communities and organisations, including City & County of Swansea Council as well as the community councils in the vicinity of the site, will be a part of the consenting process for the project, alongside the detailed environmental impact assessments and technical studies that will be undertaken over the coming months.
People and local businesses in the area are being notified of the exhibitions by letter and via an advertisement in the local press. Information about the project and Abergelli Power can also be viewed online via https://www.drax.com/uk/about-us/our-projects/abergelli-power/
Abergelli Power proposes to take gas from the nearby National Gas Transmission System and use it to generate electricity. This energy will feed into the National Grid, which also runs very close to the site. The power station will produce up to 299MW of electricity, enough to supply the equivalent of around 400,000 homes, at times when demand is highest.
Norman Campbell, Abergelli Power’s project director said:
“This power station will be an ultra modern and clean facility and a very significant investment in the local economy. We will do our utmost to ensure that the power plant will cause the minimum disturbance locally, during construction and subsequent operation. Its operation will be subject to stringent environmental and emission regulations.
“We will seek to maximise local economic benefit where we can, both during construction and operations.
He added: “Before seeking permission to build the plant, there will be an extensive consultation process with City & County of Swansea Council and with local people and interest groups. This is extremely important to us, as we want to explain our plans in detail and listen to what people have to say.”
Mr Campbell said that Swansea City Council and the Welsh Government had been briefed on the proposal. Following consultation and feedback from communities and interest groups, Abergelli Power intends to submit an application for a Development Consent Order to the UK’s Planning Inspectorate in early 2015 with a final decision taken by the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change. Additional consents, including planning permissions, may also be required for elements of the project.
Abergelli Power is a development company solely focused on taking forward the project at Abergelli Farm. It is owned by Watt Power (www.wattpowerltd.co.uk). The Watt Power management team has extensive experience of developing energy projects in the UK and overseas. The company is currently taking forward two similar power station projects in the UK: one in Hirwaun, in Rhondda Cynon Taf and one in Suffolk, south east England.
Subject to the consultation and planning process and financing, the power station could enter commercial operation in by 2020.