Cold case for coal as North Yorkshire plant wraps up

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Operators of the 2000MW Eggbrough coal fired power plant in Yorkshire have announced it will close after failing to win contracts in the latest capacity market auction.

The plant, which began operating in 1970, had been earmarked for closure during 2016 but managed to secure contracts to keep operating. The government’s policy to phase out all unabated coal fired generation capacity by 2025 cast further doubt over the plant’s future.

Coal gets cold shoulder

The operators have indicated that the plant will continue to fulfill its current obligations which run to the end of September 2018 but, without future contracts, it will cease to be economically viable.

The wider picture is the failure of coal fired generation capacity, bidding for contracts in the latest T1 2018/19 auction, to succeed against a clearing price of £6/kW, with 2.8GW of coal fired capacity exiting the auction process. One commentator on the outcome of the auction suggested that coal fired generation was now in ‘freefall’ with more plant closures expected.

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