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Centrica heralds new era of distributed generation as it sells off last UK CCGT assets

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UK power giant Centrica has disposed of the last of its combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) power stations in the UK to focus primarily on decentralised generation assets.

The firm has reached an agreement with EP UK Investments to sell its operational Langage and South Humber Bank CCGTs for a total of £318 million. EP UK is a subsidiary of EPH, the Prague-based energy group which also owns other large-scale power stations including Eggborough and Lynemouth.

The two stations have a combined capacity of 2.3GW.

Crucially, Centrica said the sell-off was consistent with its wider strategy to about-face and focus mainly on opportunities in the decentralised market, specifically in flexible peaking units, energy storage and distributed generation.

The British Gas owner will also continue to reduce its focus on large scale central power generation in a move echoed by other European power companies like RWE and Engie which have afford decentralised renewables like solar and wind – and associated technologies like battery storage – a more prominent role in their business models.

Centrica’s Distributed Energy & Power division was established two years ago but has grown quickly and aggressively through a series of complementary acquisitions. Both ENER-G and Neas Energy have been bolted on by Centrica in the last 18 months.

Earlier this year the company’s chief executive Iain Conn paid special testament to the group’s distributed divisions after they witnessed 70% revenue growth year-on-year.

And Centrica continues to work on a number of innovative projects and trials connected to decentralised power networks, most notably a £19 million part-EU funded virtual power market place trial in Cornwall

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