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EDF to sell its only UK CCGT plant West Burton B to EIG

Image: EDF.

Image: EDF.

EDF has announced the sale of its only gas-fired Combined Cycle Gas Turbine (CCGT) power station in the UK, West Burton B.

The French giant has reached an agreement with global energy investment company EIG for the 1,332MW station and 49MW battery at the site in Nottinghamshire.

West Burton B is made up of three combined cycle units, fed by a 19km gas pipeline to the site. It started generation in 2013, and currently employs 60 people.

During the particularly turbulent power price period at the beginning of 2021, West Burton B was instrumental for Britain’s grid and brought in colossal returns for EDF.

It was West Burton B from which National Grid ESO procured power at the record breaking £4,000/MWh on Friday 8 January in the Balancing Mechanism. Indeed, it received over £7.5 million in a single day, and over the period made over £20 million from reacting to the tight margins.

During this period, when low winds and cold temperatures drove up prices, West Burton B helped EDF secure more in balancing payments in three days than in Q3 2020 in total, according to research from Hartree Solutions.

News that EDF is selling its only gas-fired station follows the company announcing that it is to shutter its West Burton A coal-fired power station in September 2022. Similarly, this was its only plant relying on the fossil fuel in the UK – with its closure to leave only one coal plant in the country after next year – as EDF looks to focus firmly on its nuclear and renewables portfolios.

It is looking to divest €3 billion of assets globally by 2022, and told Current± that it had been assessing the market for West Burton B since late last year.

The company has eight nuclear power stations, more than 30 onshore wind farms and two offshore wind farms in the UK. Additionally, it is constructing Britain’s only new nuclear plant, Hinkley Point C, and plans for a replica at Sizewell C in Suffolk.

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