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RWE opens £1 billion gas-fired power plant in Wales

20 September 2012

RWE npower, the UK subsidiary of the German RWE group, has officially opened its 2,000 MW flagship power station at Pembroke in west Wales. The utility says the £1 billion station is one of Europe’s largest and most efficient combined cycle gas turbine plants and will supply over 3.5 million households across the UK.

The RWE npower combined cycle gas turbine plant at Pembroke will supply over 3.5 million households across the UK
The RWE npower combined cycle gas turbine plant at Pembroke will supply over 3.5 million households across the UK

Control of the fifth and final unit of Pembroke was handed over to the station team in early September, marking the end of over three years of construction, in which over 10,000 contractors worked 7.4 million man hours to complete the state-of-the-art facility.

Volker Beckers, Group Chief Executive Officer, RWE npower, said: “I’m delighted to welcome Pembroke Power Station into our portfolio of operational plants. This addition means RWE npower now has the largest and most efficient gas portfolio as well as the largest fleet of renewable energy technologies in the country.”

RWE has invested heavily in the UK over the past few years. As well as the £1 billion Pembroke facility and the £650 million 1,650 MW Staythorpe gas-fired power station in Nottinghamshire, which opened last year, the utility has made a number of renewable energy investments.

RWE is bringing this new capacity on stream after the earlier announcement of the closure of two of its older UK plants. The 2,000MW coal-fired Didcot A power station in Oxfordshire and the 1,000MW oil-fired Fawley plant in Hampshire will both have ceased operations by the end of March 2013.

RWE said the closure of these plants, both over 40 years old, were required under the EU Large Combustion Plant Directive which is aimed at reducing emissions across Europe.

“The closures, driven by Government policy, reflect the changing shape of power generation in the UK with modern, low carbon-power generation replacing older, less efficient power stations,” Beckers said.

The Fawley and Didcot A open cycle gas turbines will remain operational until further notice.

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