PD Ports has received Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) consent from the Marine and Fisheries Agency (MFA) in relation to the QEII berth redevelopment at Teesport.
This formal consent together with its associated licences enables PD Ports to proceed with the construction of the new 260 metre long berth, which is an integral part of MGT Power’s Tees Renewable Energy Plant development at the Port. The new berth will accommodate vessels up to 240 metres long and 38 metres wide, accommodating the world’s largest modern woodchip carrier vessels and providing MGT Power with considerable freight flexibility. The berth will bring the 2.4 million tonnes of woodchip each year, required to fuel the new power station.
The 295 megawatt (MW) wood fuelled power station is to be built on the South Dock area of Teesport. One of the world’s largest biomass plants set to be built in the UK, this £500 million investment will produce enough carbon neutral, sustainable electricity to power 600,000 homes across the North East.
Jerry Hopkinson, PD Ports’ managing director, bulks, ports and logistics, said: "This is another very significant step forward on the project and we are pleased to have received consent in a very short timeframe. The confirmation of the EIA consent has been a joint effort between PD Ports and MGT Power, working closely with the regulators and we very much look forward to seeing this major environmentally friendly power project begin construction."
Chris Moore, director at MGT Power, added: "This news continues to give strong supportive messages about our plans to build the Tees Renewable Energy Plant at Teesport and maintains our great progress towards a world class facility.
"We are delighted to hear that environmental consent has now been granted. We have received tremendous interest from third parties wanting to get involved in the construction of the power station. We aim to start work on the site in the first quarter of 2010, subject to finance."
In July, MGT Power received the final approval from the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) to proceed with the Tees Renewable Energy Plant (known as the Section 36 approval). This followed initial planning approval from Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council in November 2008.
In October, MGT Power announced that Tesco is furthering its commitment to cutting its carbon footprint by entering into an agreement with MGT Power’s Tees Renewable Energy Plant to supply 100% of its power requirement for Tesco’s Teesport import warehouse.
MGT Power: key facts & background
The project is a 295MW (megawatt) base load renewable electricity generator, and one of the world’s largest renewable energy projects of any type. The project will bring over £500m of investment into the local area during its 3 year construction period, meaning 600 construction jobs followed by 150 onsite jobs for up to 40 years. Once operational, the renewable plant will spend over £30m per year on maintenance and support services. With the Tees Valley’s core industrial expertise and experience most of this spending is set to be absorbed by local labour and firms sustaining 300-400 indirect jobs each year for the local economy.
The 295MW plant will be constructed on land adjacent to the main southern dock at Teesport, on the south bank of the River Tees. In addition to its deep-water facilities, the plant is well served by arterial transport routes such as the A66, A19, A1 and the main East coast rail network.
It is also close to the National Grid electricity transmission system and MGT Teesside – the developer for the project and wholly-owned subsidiary of MGT Power Ltd – has a transmission contract with the National Grid Company to export power from the site from 2012.
The project will comprise a single, circulating fluidised bed boiler that will burn wood chip to produce steam. The steam will be used to turn a steam turbine, which will in turn power a generator to produce electricity.
Once operational in late 2012, the plant will save 1.2m tonnes of CO2 per year and will account for 5.5% of the UK’s renewable electricity target.