Archives: Press Release

Family reunion at Cruachan Power Station

Cruachan Power Station Dam

Peter Lacey was one of the 4,000 ‘Tunnel Tigers’ who drilled, blasted and cleared the rocks from the inside of mighty Ben Cruachan over a period of six years from 1959 to 1965 to make way for the UK’s first pumped storage hydro power station.

A mural dedicated to these men has pride of place on the walls of the machine hall, and it is here where one of Peter’s sons saw a photo of him by chance when watching the comedian Frankie Boyle’s Tour of Scotland on BBC television, which featured the power station. They knew instantly it was their father in the photo, as he was missing an index finger due to an injury caused during a farming accident when he was younger.

After seeing the programme, the brothers Frank, John, Martin and Peter did some research about the men who built Cruachan and got in touch with the visitor centre to arrange a tour. As the four men now live in different locations across Britain, the four of them have only been in the same room together a handful of times over the last 30 years to attend family funerals.

The visit was delayed due to covid restrictions but the brothers have finally now been able to see the place where their father had spent many years working.

Peter Lacey grew up near Dublin and moved to Scotland with his family in 1950, leaving his job working on his family’s farm to take advantage of the generous wages being offered to labourers in Scotland – which reflected the danger and difficulty of the work.

Conditions for the men who worked at Cruachan during those early years were really tough and tragically, 15 of them died. These men are commemorated by the mural on the wall of the machine hall as well as in a specially commissioned tartan Drax created, which includes 15 strands of a special dark blue thread.

L-R: Martin, Frank, Peter and John Lacey, in front of the photo of their father Peter Lacey (pictured left) on the wall of the Cruachan Machine Hall.

Martin Lacey, the second youngest of the four brothers, said:

“My father, like many of the other men working at Loch Awe, gave up so much to better his family. We weren’t a rich family, but we never wanted for anything. We were so proud of him and always looked forward to him coming home on the weekends when he could.”

The work was physically exhausting and the environment dark and dangerous. Peter suffered several accidents during his time there, including broken ribs. During retirement he lost his eyesight too, which was put down to the hours he had spent working in the darkness of the tunnel all those years earlier.

The brothers took a tour of Cruachan power station during their visit. They were in awe of the size and scale of the power station which their father helped to build:

“We were able to go inside the machine hall which is the size of three football fields and the height of St Paul’s Cathedral. The generators are huge. When we stood beside the photo of our father and saw the inner workings of the hall I was so impressed.”

They also viewed the mural in the machine hall privately – a very emotional experience for them as they remembered their father, who they described as a thoughtful and caring man.

“To us he was a giant of a man at 6ft 3. He was never ill and never felt the cold, he never wore a jacket or jumper no matter the weather,” Martin recalled.

“He never asked for much. He was a family man and very content with what he had. He was extremely hard-working and could never sit still for long. Even when he wasn’t working, he always had to be doing something, gardening or fixing things.”

Martin added:

“Our father and mother taught us to love and support each other, work hard and be decent people. Even though it’s been years since we’ve been together as a family, the lessons they taught us stay with us to this day.”

The brothers now live in different parts of the country. Frank travelled the furthest for the family reunion at Cruachan – coming from Skelmersdale in Lancashire, which is over 280 miles away.

Martin said:

“The staff at Cruachan made the visit really special for us. I’d like to thank them again, we had a great time and it’s a trip that we will always remember. I hope to visit again in the future with my wife.”

Ishbel McFarlane, Cruachan Visitor Centre Team Leader accompanied the brothers on the tour.

She said:

“When the brothers got in touch, we were more than happy to accommodate them. They were a delight to show round the power station and it was so interesting hearing their stories and memories about their father. I hope they enjoyed their time at Cruachan and will visit again in the future.”

After the visit, the brothers each received a scarf made from the special tartan Drax commissioned to commemorate the men who built Cruachan.

You can find out more about the men who built Cruachan Power Station here and to book a tour, go to the website at www.visitcruachan.co.uk

ENDS

Photo caption: L-R: Martin, Frank, Peter and John Lacey, in front of the photo of their father Peter Lacey (pictured left) on the wall of the Cruachan Machine Hall.

Media contacts:

Megan Hopgood
Communications Officer
E:[email protected]
T: 07936 350 175

Aidan Kerr
Media Manager
E: [email protected]
T: 07849 090 368

Editor’s Notes

Peter Lacey died aged 79 in Skelmersdale, Lancashire surrounded by his family on 25th June 1998.

Frank, John, Martin and Peter also have three younger sisters, Margaret, Anna and Geraldine. Margaret passed away in 2013. Anna and Geraldine were unable to make the trip to Cruachan due to work and childcare commitments.

The power station welcomes around 50,000 visitors every year.

Drax is moving forward with ambitious plans to build a new underground pumped storage hydro plant at its Cruachan facility. The new 600MW station would be built within a new, hollowed-out cavern that would be large enough to fit Big Ben on its side.

The new power station will provide a huge boost to communities around Loch Awe and across Argyll during construction, with the creation of jobs in these rural areas.

About Drax

Drax Group’s purpose is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future and in 2019 announced a world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) technology.

Drax’s around 3,000 employees operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production and supply to third parties. For more information visit www.drax.com

Power generation:

Drax owns and operates a portfolio of renewable electricity generation assets in England and Scotland. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies five percent of the country’s electricity needs.

Having converted 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. It is also where Drax is piloting the groundbreaking negative emissions technology BECCS within its CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage) Incubation Area.

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.

The Group also aims to build on its BECCS innovation at Drax Power Station with a target to deliver 4Mt of negative CO2 emissions each year from new-build BECCS outside of the UK by 2030 and is currently developing models for North American and European markets.

Pellet production and supply:

The Group has 17 operational pellet plants and developments with nameplate capacity of 4.6Mt, which will increase to c.5Mt once developments are complete.

Drax is targeting 8Mt of production capacity by 2030, which will require the development of over 3Mt of new biomass pellet production capacity. The pellets are produced using materials sourced from sustainably managed working forests and are supplied to third party customers in Europe and Asia for the generation of renewable power.

Drax’s pellet mills supply around 30% of the biomass used at its own power station in North Yorkshire, England to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.

Customers: 

Drax is the largest supplier of renewable electricity to UK businesses, supplying 100% renewable electricity as standard to more than 370,000 sites through Drax and Opus Energy.

It offers a range of energy-related services including energy optimisation, as well as electric vehicle strategy and management.

To find out more go to the website www.energy.drax.com

Northern leaders Unite for Ukraine

  • Businesses come together to offer a one stop shop for jobs for Ukrainian refugees.
  • Leaders commit to welcoming and supporting all who are fleeing Ukraine.
  • New platform provides employment and support opportunities.

A consortium of business leaders from across the North have joined forces to provide employment opportunities and support to Ukrainians impacted by the invasion of their country.

United For Ukraine is a coalition brought together at the request of leaders from across the North, including the Northern Powerhouse Partnership and North West Business Leadership Team (NWBLT), with support from the NP11 group of Local Enterprise Partnerships. The initiative is focused around a digital platform, created by the Growth Company, which connects employers with evacuees.

For Ukrainian nationals, and other refugees who are eligible, the United For Ukraine website provides a searchable list of job vacancies with employers who have committed to providing good job opportunities in a supportive environment.

For employers, the free-to-use site provides an easy and direct way to communicate job opportunities and access the right support, to employ those coming here who wish to, and are able to, work.

Vacancies listed on the site will adhere to criteria such as the offer at least a real living wage, and disclosable salaries, to ensure the opportunities on offer are quality jobs.

The site – which is accessible in both English and Ukrainian – also provides signposting to support services and referral agencies for Ukrainian refugees, such as free English language courses and how to open a bank account, as well as services providing advice on issues including housing, work permits and childcare.

It follows the news that the UK Government’s ‘Homes for Ukraine’ scheme has seen more than 100,000 people sign up to provide Ukrainian refugees fleeing their country with accommodation. Those refugees who enter under the scheme will be granted leave to remain in the UK for three years, during which time they will be able to work and access benefits and public services – including healthcare and state schooling.

Organisations involved in the creation of United For Ukraine include KPMG, PWC, Creative Concern, DWF Law, EY, Cirrus Connect, Bruntwood, Siemens, Northern Power Women, Net Zero North West and Agent.

Mike Wilton, Director at Arup, and NWBLT Board Member who has chaired the coalition, said:

“Now is the time for us to work together to do all we can to support these refugees who are fleeing the conflict with Russia. I’m incredibly proud of everyone who has joined forces to make this happen, on an entirely voluntary basis, using their own time and resources to do the right thing.

“Not only is this incredibly important to support Ukrainian nationals, but it’s also hugely beneficial for our region. We know that many skills gaps exist in the North, and we have an unprecedented level of unfilled vacancies, so this will help us to bridge those gaps – there are so many reasons for us to get behind this initiative.”

Professor Juergen Maier CBE, vice-chair of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership, said:

“It’s wonderful to see the northern business community coming together to provide employment opportunities for refugees.

“We want to send a message to those fleeing the appalling situation in their home country that they are very welcome here and that we are ready to support them however we can.”

Andy Skelton, Drax’s Chief Financial Officer, said:

“We must do all we can to support the Ukrainian people in their hour of need and Drax is proud to be among the businesses in the North taking part in this initiative to help those coming to the UK. By providing employment opportunities and other support through the United for Ukraine website, we hope to help ease some of the distress these families are suffering as they transition to living and working in a new country.”

To find out more and to support the initiative, visit www.unitedforukraine.org.uk.

ENDS

About United For Ukraine

United For Ukraine is an online platform and helpline created by a consortium of public, private and voluntary sector partners, to provide employment opportunities, with related support, to Ukrainians impacted by the invasion of their country.

It comes following the news that the UK Government ‘Homes for Ukraine’ scheme has seen more than 100,000 people sign up to provide Ukrainian refugees fleeing their country with accommodation.

https://unitedforukraine.org.uk

Hundreds of millions of pounds worth of contracts available to build world’s biggest carbon capture project at Drax

Sunset behind biomass storage domes at Drax Power Station in North Yorkshire
  • Business events are being held in Yorkshire & the Humber and the North East to give local companies more information about how they can win contracts to help Drax deliver its multi-billion-pound bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) project at Drax Power Station.
  • Drax is aiming to source 80% of construction materials and services for its BECCS project from British businesses.
  • The project will also create 10,000 jobs across the region during construction, developing green skills and helping to level up the North.

Renewable energy company Drax is teaming up with Worley, its engineering, procurement and construction partner, the UK’s leading UK energy sector business development organisation NOF, and the West & North Yorkshire and Hull & Humber Chambers of Commerce to deliver a series of events that will provide British businesses with further information about how they could win hundreds of millions of pounds worth of contracts to deliver its vital carbon removal technology, bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS).

The events will be held in Yorkshire & The Humber and the North East, in May and follow the success of an initial supplier event, held virtually in September 2021, when around 400 UK businesses attended.

Drax has previously said that it aims to source 80% of construction materials and services from British firms and build a robust UK supply chain for BECCS, ahead of construction getting underway as soon as 2024, with the creation of around 10,000 jobs.

Graham Backhouse, Drax’s Commercial Director for the BECCS project, said:

“We want to put British businesses at the heart of our plans to deliver BECCS, allowing them to benefit from hundreds of millions of pounds worth of new contracts.

“Negative emissions technologies like BECCS will play a vital role in enabling the UK to reach its net zero goals, as well as creating exciting opportunities for Britain to lead the world in a vital technology, creating a new sector of the economy, as well as export opportunities.

“Our programme of events is a great opportunity for businesses to get involved and learn more about the project – we encourage companies of all sizes across the region to come along and find out more about how they might benefit from the contracts available.”

Bradley Andrews, President at Worley, said:

“We’re supporting the investment and scale up of the UK supply chain to maximise local business participation working alongside Drax, NOF and Worley’s e-procurement partner, Requis.

“Requis provides a digitally enabled platform where qualified suppliers can register their materials and services in line with what’s required for the project scope, driving opportunity for the UK supply market.”

Joanne Leng MBE, Chief Executive at NOF, said:

“NOF has now delivered a significant number of supplier engagement activities on behalf of major clients in the energy industry.

“We are now working on the BECCS project with Drax and Worley who have both demonstrated a strong commitment to working with the local and wider UK supply chain and through NOF’s support they aim to ensure that as much UK content as possible is included in this project. The domestic supply chain is innovative, capable and competitive, it is world class so let’s utilise this experience and expertise on the project.”

Drax has a proven track record in delivering ambitious and pioneering infrastructure projects – the conversion of its power station in North Yorkshire to use sustainable biomass  has enabled it to become the UK’s largest single site renewable generator, supporting more than 6,600 jobs throughout its supply chains across the North, whilst reducing its emissions by over 95% and paving the way for the deployment of BECCS.

Drax aims to deliver the world’s largest carbon capture in power project this decade, making a signification contribution to the UK’s decarbonisation targets.

Businesses can find out more about Drax’s plans and how to register with Requis to attend the nationwide supplier event series by visiting this link.

ENDS

Media contacts:

Ben Wicks
Media Manager
E: [email protected]
T: 07762 525 661

Editor’s Notes

  • The Humber event will be held at The Double by Hilton on Tuesday 17th May from 10:00 – 15:00.
  • The North East event will be held at Wynyard Hall on Wednesday 18th May from 10:00 – 15:00.
  • Businesses looking to register for either event can do so via this link.
  • 80% domestic supply chain figure includes materials and services to be used within the construction for Drax’s BECCS project, however, this does not include the carbon capture technology to be delivered by Drax’s technology partner Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.
  • Leading climate scientists at the UN’s IPCC and UK Climate Change Committee have said that the world cannot address the climate crisis without negative emissions from technologies like BECCS, which permanently remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
  • Work to build BECCS at Drax could get underway as soon as 2024, with the creation of thousands of jobs.
  • Subject to the right regulatory support, the first BECCS unit could be operational in 2027, with the second commissioned in 2030, enabling Drax to achieve its world-leading ambition to be a carbon negative company by 2030.
  • Analysis by Baringa shows BECCS at Drax will save the UK £13bn in achieving the government’s legally binding fifth Carbon Budget.

About Drax

Drax Group’s purpose is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future and in 2019 announced a world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) technology.

Drax’s around 3,000 employees operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production and supply to third parties. For more information visit www.drax.com

Power generation:

Drax owns and operates a portfolio of renewable electricity generation assets in England and Scotland. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies five percent of the country’s electricity needs.

Having converted 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. It is also where Drax is piloting the groundbreaking negative emissions technology BECCS within its CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage) Incubation Area.

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.

The Group also aims to build on its BECCS innovation at Drax Power Station with a target to deliver 4Mt of negative CO2 emissions each year from new-build BECCS outside of the UK by 2030 and is currently developing models for North American and European markets.

Pellet production and supply:

The Group has 17 operational pellet plants and developments with nameplate capacity of 4.6Mt, which will increase to c.5Mt once developments are complete.

Drax is targeting 8Mt of production capacity by 2030, which will require the development of over 3Mt of new biomass pellet production capacity. The pellets are produced using materials sourced from sustainably managed working forests and are supplied to third party customers in Europe and Asia for the generation of renewable power.

Drax’s pellet mills supply around 30% of the biomass used at its own power station in North Yorkshire, England to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.

Customers: 

Drax is the largest supplier of renewable electricity to UK businesses, supplying 100% renewable electricity as standard to more than 370,000 sites through Drax and Opus Energy.

It offers a range of energy-related services including energy optimisation, as well as electric vehicle strategy and management.

To find out more go to the website www.energy.drax.com

Allied Glass signs deal with Drax for 100% renewable hydro power

Renewable energy giant Drax, has signed an agreement with Allied Glass to provide 66GWh 100% renewable electricity per year from one of Drax’s run of river hydro-electric schemes located in Scotland.

The corporate power purchase agreement (CPPA) allows Allied Glass to use hydro-backed Renewable Energy Guarantee of Origin (REGO) certificates to support its carbon reduction goals, linked to the generation at the Galloway hydro scheme.  The CPPA means that Allied Glass can state with authority where their energy is sourced from and will help the business to further reduce its carbon emissions – already down by more than 10% since 2015.

The Galloway hydro scheme generates renewable power in response to rising electricity demand, helping to provide grid stability.

Dating back to 1935, the Galloway complex was the first large scale integrated hydro-electric power scheme to be built in Britain. Located in rural south-west Scotland it comprises six power stations, 12 turbines, eight large dams, 16km of tunnels and pipelines, five fish passes, 22 bridges and four pumping stations, generating 126MWs of renewable electricity – enough to supply 70,000 homes.

Valpy Fitzgerald, Director of Renewables and Sustainable Commodities at Drax, said:

“We’re delighted to partner with Allied Glass to provide them with 100% renewable source power, as well as Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin (REGOs) from our Galloway hydro scheme.

“Renewable energy is increasingly important to organisations as they look for ways to decarbonise – and being on supply with our 100% renewable source power is a simple first step. Our Galloway CPPA presents another opportunity for our customers to demonstrate their Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) credentials while making significant progress towards achieving net zero.”

Alan Henderson, CEO at Allied Glass, said:

“We chose to source our renewable power from Drax’s Galloway Hydro Scheme, as knowing exactly where our electricity comes from helps us continue towards our 2025 sustainability targets.

“We work closely with our suppliers to ensure that the materials and resources we use are sustainable. Renewable electricity is very much part of that process. We’re very happy that we can say our operations are powered by 100% renewable electricity. It’s important for us as a business to be able to operate with a low impact on the environment. Electricity and renewable certification from Drax helps us to demonstrate that to our customers, which is becoming more important.”

ENDS

Picture caption: One the Galloway Hydro Scheme’s eight dams, in Carsfad.

Notes to editor

A corporate power purchase agreement (CPPA) is an energy contract for businesses that want to purchase renewable electricity directly from a specific producer and location.

While power purchase agreements (PPA) are made between a power generator and third party, such as an energy supplier, CPPAs allow organisations to contract directly with a power generator to provide long-term support of a specific source of renewable electricity.

The contract with Allied Glass spans 30 months and will see Drax provide 66GWh per annum of renewable electricity.

Media contacts

Ben Wicks
Media Manager
E: [email protected]
T: 07762 525 661

About Drax

Drax Group’s purpose is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future and in 2019 announced a world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) technology.

Drax’s around 3,000 employees operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production and supply to third parties. For more information visit www.drax.com

Power generation:

Drax owns and operates a portfolio of renewable electricity generation assets in England and Scotland. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies five percent of the country’s electricity needs.

Having converted 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. It is also where Drax is piloting the groundbreaking negative emissions technology BECCS within its CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage) Incubation Area.

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.

The Group also aims to build on its BECCS innovation at Drax Power Station with a target to deliver 4Mt of negative CO2 emissions each year from new-build BECCS outside of the UK by 2030 and is currently developing models for North American and European markets.

Pellet production and supply:

The Group has 17 operational pellet plants and developments with nameplate capacity of 4.6Mt, which will increase to c.5Mt once developments are complete.

Drax is targeting 8Mt of production capacity by 2030, which will require the development of over 3Mt of new biomass pellet production capacity. The pellets are produced using materials sourced from sustainably managed working forests and are supplied to third party customers in Europe and Asia for the generation of renewable power.

Drax’s pellet mills supply around 30% of the biomass used at its own power station in North Yorkshire, England to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.

Customers: 

Drax is the largest supplier of renewable electricity to UK businesses, supplying 100% renewable electricity as standard to more than 370,000 sites through Drax and Opus Energy.

It offers a range of energy-related services including energy optimisation, as well as electric vehicle strategy and management.

To find out more go to the website www.energy.drax.com

Back to school at Drax: UK’s biggest renewable power station reopens for educational tours

The UK’s biggest renewable power generator, Drax Group, is inviting schools and colleges back to its eponymous power station for the first time since the country went into lockdown due to Covid-19.

Prior to the pandemic, Drax Power Station near Selby in North Yorkshire, welcomed more than 12,000 visitors every year, many of whom were students, visiting as part of the renewable energy company’s initiatives to encourage young people to study STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects, boosting skills across the region.

In line with lockdown rules, Drax suspended its public tours in March 2020 to protect its key workers, who worked around the clock throughout the pandemic to ensure the country had the renewable electricity it needed. Drax produces 12% of the UK’s renewable electricity – more than any other generator.

Wyke Sixth Form College in Hull was one of the first schools to visit the power station since it reopened, taking part in a tour which supported the work the students are doing to understand how renewable electricity is generated.

Plant Director Bruce Heppenstall said: “We work closely with schools in our communities to inspire the next generation to study STEM subjects, and we’re pleased to be able to offer tours of the power station again after being closed to the public for so long.

“These tours are so important – they fire up students’ imaginations by showing them some of the cutting-edge green technologies we’re pioneering, such as BECCS which could play a vital role in addressing the climate crisis as well as delivering jobs and clean growth here in the North.”

Wyke Sixth Form College students in front of Drax biomass domes

The group of 20 students aged between 16 and 18, were taken on a full tour of the site, which included seeing Drax’s Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) pilot project. BECCS is a vital negative emissions technology which Drax plans to use to permanently remove millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere every year, whilst also generating the reliable, renewable electricity the country needs.

BECCS at Drax would support over 10,000 jobs at its peak, and it is vital that the region’s workforce has the skills needed to deliver this green energy technology, enabling the UK to meet its net zero target.

Sophie Thompson, Head of Science at Wyke Sixth Form College, said: “The students had a great day at Drax, learning about how the electricity system works and where our electricity is generated. Visits like this are so valuable because seeing the power station and the scale of the operations is impossible to replicate in a classroom – it really brings the subject to life.”

During the tour, pupils learnt how renewable electricity is generated and discovered how sustainable, wood pellets have enabled Drax to reduce its carbon emissions by 95% in a decade, making it Europe’s biggest decarbonisation project.

They saw the 427-metre turbine hall that houses the huge turbines which power the generators to produce electricity, as well as the wood pellet storage domes – each large enough to fit The Royal Albert Hall inside, and the 115m high cooling towers, which are taller than the Statue of Liberty.

Tours are free to all primary and secondary schools and can be tailored to suit the area of the curriculum teachers are interested in.

Schools interested in organising a tour, should contact [email protected].

Photo caption: L-R: Drax visitor centre guide Stanimira Brown and Wyke Sixth Form College students Olivia Laws and Kai Carney

ENDS

Media contacts:

Megan Hopgood
Communications Officer
E:
[email protected]
T: 07936 350 175

Editor’s Notes

Drax runs a number of other initiatives to support STEM education and skills, including:

About Drax

Drax Group’s purpose is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future and in 2019 announced a world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) technology.

Its 3,400 employees operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production and supply to third parties. For more information visit www.drax.com

Power generation:

Drax owns and operates a portfolio of renewable electricity generation assets in England and Scotland. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies five percent of the country’s electricity needs.

Having converted 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. It is also where Drax is piloting the groundbreaking negative emissions technology BECCS within its CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage) Incubation Area.

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.

The Group also aims to build on its BECCS innovation at Drax Power Station with a target to deliver 4Mt of negative CO2 emissions each year from new-build BECCS outside of the UK by 2030 and is currently developing models for North American and European markets.

Pellet production and supply:
The Group has 13 operational pellet plants with nameplate capacity of c.4Mt, plus a further two plants currently commissioning and other developments/expansions which will increase this to c.5Mt once complete.

Drax is targeting 8Mt of production capacity by 2030, which will require the development of over 3Mt of new biomass pellet production capacity. The pellets are produced using materials sourced from sustainably managed working forests and are supplied to third party customers in Europe and Asia for the generation of renewable power.

Drax’s pellet mills supply around 30% of the biomass used at its own power station in North Yorkshire, England to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.

Customers: 

Drax is the largest supplier of renewable electricity to UK businesses, supplying 100% renewable electricity as standard to more than 370,000 sites through Drax and Opus Energy.

It offers a range of energy-related services including energy optimisation, as well as electric vehicle strategy and management.

To find out more go to the website www.energy.drax.com

Drax employees donate essential supplies to local foodbanks

Colleagues at Drax’s Daldowie Fuel Plant have donated over 30 bags of food and toiletries to support local foodbanks, thanks to the generosity and fundraising efforts of the team.

This donation is the latest of many that the team has made, collecting a total of over 80 bags of supplies and supporting nine different foodbanks in the Glasgow and Lanarkshire areas since the initiative began in December 2019.

Daldowie Engineer James Beveridge, who organised the donation, said:In December 2019, we decided to set up a donation box to see if colleagues would be interested in helping local foodbanks in the Glasgow area. The response was fantastic, and we have been able to help several charities throughout the Glasgow and Lanarkshire areas. The kindness of people at our site has been incredible, with donations coming in all the time.”

Day Teams Senior Operator Arek Blyskun cooked a special Polish goulash for the team to raise money for the foodbanks

In addition to the collection of food and toiletries, Day Teams Senior Operator Arek Blyskun cooked a special Polish goulash for the team on two occasions, raising £235 which was then match funded by Drax and split between three different foodbanks.

Ian Kinnaird, Drax Group’s Scottish Assets and Generation Engineering Director, said: “I’m really proud of the generosity of the team and their efforts to do something positive for the local community – continuing Drax’s long tradition of supporting the communities local to its operations.”

Ann Hunter, Volunteer at the Rutherglen and Cambuslang Foodbank, said: “Thank you to the team at Daldowie for their generous donation of items to the foodbank which will help to support those facing hard times this year. Collections from local supermarkets alone are not sufficient to keep up with the volume of goods being distributed to the needy and we tend to receive less donations in January and February, making these gifts especially welcome.

“Our distribution centres are busy and provide a vital lifeline to those in need in our community. It is only through kind people and organisations such as Drax and the team at Daldowie that we are able to carry on with this essential work.”

ENDS

Media contacts:

Megan Hopgood
Communications Officer
E:
[email protected]
T: 07936 350 175
 

 

About Drax

Drax Group’s purpose is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future and in 2019 announced a world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) technology.

Drax’s around 3,000 employees operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production and supply to third parties. For more information visit www.drax.com

Power generation:

Drax owns and operates a portfolio of renewable electricity generation assets in England and Scotland. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies five percent of the country’s electricity needs.

Having converted 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. It is also where Drax is piloting the groundbreaking negative emissions technology BECCS within its CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage) Incubation Area.

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.

The Group also aims to build on its BECCS innovation at Drax Power Station with a target to deliver 4Mt of negative CO2 emissions each year from new-build BECCS outside of the UK by 2030 and is currently developing models for North American and European markets.

Pellet production and supply:
The Group has 17 operational pellet plants and developments with nameplate capacity of 4.6Mt, which will increase to c.5Mt once developments are complete.

Drax is targeting 8Mt of production capacity by 2030, which will require the development of over 3Mt of new biomass pellet production capacity. The pellets are produced using materials sourced from sustainably managed working forests and are supplied to third party customers in Europe and Asia for the generation of renewable power.

Drax’s pellet mills supply around 30% of the biomass used at its own power station in North Yorkshire, England to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.

Customers: 

Drax is the largest supplier of renewable electricity to UK businesses, supplying 100% renewable electricity as standard to more than 370,000 sites through Drax and Opus Energy.

It offers a range of energy-related services including energy optimisation, as well as electric vehicle strategy and management.

To find out more go to the website www.energy.drax.com

Drax holds final community events on Cruachan expansion plans

Cruachan Power Station Dam

Under the plans, a second underground power station will be built adjacent to the existing one to enable Cruachan to play an even bigger role in supporting the expansion of renewable energy sources, such as wind power, and provide stability services to the national grid.

Around 900 jobs will be created and indirectly supported during the new power station’s construction, providing a huge economic boost to communities around Loch Awe and across Argyll.

The previous round of public exhibitions revealed overwhelming support for the development. Since then, the project team has worked to refine the proposals and is pleased to be able to share details of this at the events:

  • Dalmally Community Centre – Tuesday 15 March 2022, 1.30pm to 7.30pm
  • Taynuilt Village Hall – Wednesday 16 March 2022, 1.30pm to 7.30pm

Steve Marshall, Drax’s Development Manager, said:

“More than a hundred people attended the last round of public exhibitions, underlining the level of public interest in Drax’s exciting plans to expand Cruachan. This power station has been at the heart of the community for more than half a century and with this proposed investment from Drax, it will continue to be so for many more decades to come.

“Our development will support around 900 jobs during construction, a huge investment in the local area. By expanding Cruachan we will ensure more renewable power is available to Scotland’s homes and businesses, helping to reduce energy costs and emissions.”

Following the public consultation, Drax will submit a Section 36 application to the Scottish Government for their consideration. A decision from the government is expected to be received in 2023.

The project requires a new financial stability support mechanism from the UK government to secure private investment in long-duration storage sites such as Cruachan. If this is developed and the planning application is approved, then work to build the new capacity at Cruachan could get underway in 2024, with the facility operational in 2030.

ENDS

Editor’s Notes

  • Copies of the exhibition boards and other materials will be available for viewing and download via the website at www.cruachanexpansion.com from 14 March or they can be viewed at Cruachan Visitor Centre from 17 March.
  • No investment decision has yet been taken by Drax and development remains subject to the right regulatory framework from the UK government.

Media contacts:

Aidan Kerr
Media Manager
E: [email protected]
T: 07849 090 368

Ali Lewis
Head of Media & PR
E: [email protected]
T: 07712 670 888

About Drax

Drax Group’s purpose is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future and in 2019 announced a world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) technology.

Drax’s around 3,000 employees operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production and supply to third parties. For more information visit www.drax.com

Power generation:

Drax owns and operates a portfolio of renewable electricity generation assets in England and Scotland. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies five percent of the country’s electricity needs.

Having converted 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. It is also where Drax is piloting the groundbreaking negative emissions technology BECCS within its CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage) Incubation Area.

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.

The Group also aims to build on its BECCS innovation at Drax Power Station with a target to deliver 4Mt of negative CO2 emissions each year from new-build BECCS outside of the UK by 2030 and is currently developing models for North American and European markets.  

Pellet production and supply:

The Group has 17 operational pellet plants and developments with nameplate capacity of 4.6Mt, which will increase to c.5Mt once developments are complete.

Drax is targeting 8Mt of production capacity by 2030, which will require the development of over 3Mt of new biomass pellet production capacity. The pellets are produced using materials sourced from sustainably managed working forests and are supplied to third party customers in Europe and Asia for the generation of renewable power.

Drax’s pellet mills supply around 30% of the biomass used at its own power station in North Yorkshire, England to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.   

Customers:  

Drax is the largest supplier of renewable electricity to UK businesses, supplying 100% renewable electricity as standard to more than 370,000 sites through Drax and Opus Energy.

It offers a range of energy-related services including energy optimisation, as well as electric vehicle strategy and management.

To find out more go to the website www.energy.drax.com

Drax celebrates National Apprenticeship Week in Scotland with masterclass for students and teachers

The energy company is offering interactive sessions for students and teachers in S4 – 6 to raise awareness of the apprenticeships that Drax and other businesses have to offer.

The sessions will be available to schools local to Drax’s operations in Scotland which includes Cruachan Power Station, Daldowie Fuel Plant and the Lanark and Galloway Hydro-electric Schemes.

The masterclasses will include an overview of everything related to apprenticeships and the opportunities that are available, tips for the application process and a Q&A session with one of Drax’s own apprentices. Students will also receive a writing guide to help them develop or polish up their CVs.  

Karen McKeever, Drax’s Chief HR Officer, said:

“Drax is committed to championing and supporting people in their early careers. Hiring and developing a talented workforce of the future is essential for an innovative business like Drax. National Apprenticeship Week is a great opportunity to demonstrate the value of apprenticeships and highlight them as a potential career pathway.”

The ‘Apprenticeships at Drax: What You Need to Know’ sessions will take place on Wednesday 9th and Friday 11th March. Teachers and students can register to take part online.

Drax’s long-running apprenticeship scheme is part of its commitment to developing new talent as well as upskilling the workforce across the region. Drax has 52 apprentices as well as 50 existing employees working towards apprenticeship qualifications within the business. Find out more about apprenticeships at Drax here.

Photo caption: Apprentices from Drax’s sites in Scotland

ENDS

Media contacts: 

Megan Hopgood
Communications Officer
E: [email protected]
T: 07936 350 175  

Editor’s Notes

Drax has been running an apprenticeship scheme for almost two decades at its eponymous power station in North Yorkshire. In recent years it has extended this across the whole business in the UK, as well as offering internships and graduate schemes as part of its dedication to improving skills and increasing opportunities for young people. For more details go to www.drax.com/careers.

Drax’s craft apprenticeship scheme gives new recruits the opportunity to gain skills and expertise by working alongside highly qualified engineers. It is a four-year programme, and specialises in three engineering disciplines: Mechanical, Electrical and Control & Instrumentation. In addition to engineering disciplines, Drax also offers apprenticeship qualifications in business support areas such as HR, cyber security, and administration. For current vacancies, go to https://www.drax.com/careers/apprenticeships/.

Drax also recently transferred some of its apprenticeship levy to allow smaller local businesses to hire apprentices as part of its commitment to supporting the communities near to its operations.

Drax runs a number of other initiatives to support STEM education and skills, including:

Drax is moving forward with ambitious plans to build a new underground pumped storage hydro plant at its existing Cruachan facility in Argyll, Scotland. The new 600MW station would be built within a new, hollowed-out cavern that would be large enough to fit Big Ben on its side.

Around 900 jobs would be created and indirectly supported during the new power station’s construction, providing a huge boost to communities around Loch Awe and across Argyll.

About Drax

Drax Group’s purpose is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future and in 2019 announced a world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) technology.

Its 3,400 employees operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production and supply to third parties. For more information visit www.drax.com

Power generation:

Drax owns and operates a portfolio of renewable electricity generation assets in England and Scotland. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies five percent of the country’s electricity needs.

Having converted 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. It is also where Drax is piloting the groundbreaking negative emissions technology BECCS within its CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage) Incubation Area.

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.

The Group also aims to build on its BECCS innovation at Drax Power Station with a target to deliver 4Mt of negative CO2 emissions each year from new-build BECCS outside of the UK by 2030 and is currently developing models for North American and European markets.

Pellet production and supply:

The Group has 13 operational pellet plants with nameplate capacity of c.4Mt, plus a further two plants currently commissioning and other developments/expansions which will increase this to c.5Mt once complete.

Drax is targeting 8Mt of production capacity by 2030, which will require the development of over 3Mt of new biomass pellet production capacity. The pellets are produced using materials sourced from sustainably managed working forests and are supplied to third party customers in Europe and Asia for the generation of renewable power.

Drax’s pellet mills supply around 30% of the biomass used at its own power station in North Yorkshire, England to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.

Customers: 

Drax is the largest supplier of renewable electricity to UK businesses, supplying 100% renewable electricity as standard to more than 370,000 sites through Drax and Opus Energy.

It offers a range of energy-related services including energy optimisation, as well as electric vehicle strategy and management.

To find out more go to the website www.energy.drax.com

Schoolchildren rise to Drax’s recycled robots challenge

The Visitor Centre Team at Drax Power Station has developed the STEM box project, an engaging activity for students to take part in relating to the subject areas of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths.

Students aged between seven and eleven at Camblesforth Community Primary Academy and Selby Community Primary School, were provided with individual activity boxes containing a range of learning materials, games and resources they will need to build their robots, the focus of which is on recycling and forms part of their school curriculum.

The robots are made from recyclable materials that can be found around the house such as bottles, tin cans and cardboard and have been designed to carry out recycling tasks such as having magnetic hands to pick up metal, or built-in compartments to store paper.

To launch the project, students received a presentation from visitor centre guides on recycling and the role everyone plays ensuring the correct waste items enter recycling schemes.

Drax Director of Sustainability, Alan Knight, said:

“By providing schools with these resources we hope to further students’ understanding of the importance of recycling and hopefully fire up their imaginations and inspire them to study STEM subjects by showing them the wide range of career options that are available.”

Year 4 pupils at Selby Community Primary School with Drax Visitor Centre Guide Natalie Dobson

Camblesforth Community Primary Academy teacher Georgia Wynn said:

“The students had a great time taking part in the STEM box programme, learning about Drax, and building the recycling robots. Activities like these are so important as it really brings the subject to life and encourages students to start thinking about careers they might enjoy in the future.”

Selby Community Primary School teacher Louisa Currie said:

“Creating their amazing robots really sparked the children’s enthusiasm for STEM and drew their focus to the importance of recycling. We look forward to continuing to work with Drax on projects such as this.”

Drax has a long tradition of supporting education and helping to inspire the next generation of engineers by encouraging interest in STEM subjects. The renewable energy company offers a number of other initiatives to support STEM education and skills including virtual tours of Drax’s power stations, STEM workshops in schools, work experience and providing laptops with free internet access.

Main image caption: Year 3 pupils at Camblesforth Community Primary Academy with Visitor Centre Guide Jane Breach and Teacher Mr Card

ENDS

Media contacts:

Megan Hopgood
Communications Officer
E: [email protected]
T: 07936 350 175
  

About Drax

Drax Group’s purpose is to enable a zero carbon, lower cost energy future and in 2019 announced a world-leading ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage (BECCS) technology.

Its 3,400 employees operate across three principal areas of activity – electricity generation, electricity sales to business customers and compressed wood pellet production and supply to third parties. For more information visit www.drax.com

Power generation:

Drax owns and operates a portfolio of renewable electricity generation assets in England and Scotland. The assets include the UK’s largest power station, based at Selby, North Yorkshire, which supplies five percent of the country’s electricity needs.

Having converted 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. It is also where Drax is piloting the groundbreaking negative emissions technology BECCS within its CCUS (Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage) Incubation Area.

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.

The Group also aims to build on its BECCS innovation at Drax Power Station with a target to deliver 4Mt of negative CO2 emissions each year from new-build BECCS outside of the UK by 2030 and is currently developing models for North American and European markets.

Pellet production and supply:

The Group has 13 operational pellet plants with nameplate capacity of c.4Mt, plus a further two plants currently commissioning and other developments/expansions which will increase this to c.5Mt once complete.

Drax is targeting 8Mt of production capacity by 2030, which will require the development of over 3Mt of new biomass pellet production capacity. The pellets are produced using materials sourced from sustainably managed working forests and are supplied to third party customers in Europe and Asia for the generation of renewable power.

Drax’s pellet mills supply around 30% of the biomass used at its own power station in North Yorkshire, England to generate flexible, renewable power for the UK’s homes and businesses.

Customers:  

Drax is the largest supplier of renewable electricity to UK businesses, supplying 100% renewable electricity as standard to more than 370,000 sites through Drax and Opus Energy.

It offers a range of energy-related services including energy optimisation, as well as electric vehicle strategy and management.

To find out more go to the website www.energy.drax.com