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Fiddler’s Ferry extends operating life an extra year

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World Coal,

UK power firm SSE has secured a one-year contract for the Fiddler’s Ferry coal-fired power plant in Cheshire, UK, to provide ancillary services to National Grid.

The one-year contract, commencing on 1 April 2016, will cover one of the three available units at the site. It was secured following a competitive procurement process.

The future of commercial operation at three of the four units at Fiddler’s Ferry (1455 MW) has been the subject of a consultation, announced by SSE on 3 February 2016. The fourth unit has a ‘Supplemental Balancing Reserve’ (SBR) contract for the winter of 2016/2017.

Following successfully securing the contract to provide ancillary services, and in view of the UK government’s current consultation on reforms to the Capacity Market, SSE has decided to:

  • Confirm that, in accordance with its statement on 3 February 2016, one unit at the plant will provide SBR services to National Grid for the winter of 2016/17. Transmission Entry Capacity (TEC) is therefore not required for this unit’s capacity.
  • Retain TEC for the station of 1455 MW, equivalent to the capacity of three units, for 2016/2017.
  • Enter all or part of Fiddler’s Ferry capacity into any 2017/2018 Capacity Market auction.

SSE currently employs 213 people at Fiddler’s Ferry. In light of announcing the contact extension, SSE will consult further with its employees and their representatives about the future operational requirements of the site.

Martin Pibworth, Managing Director, Wholesale, for SSE said: “Challenging economic and environmental conditions for coal as the UK cleans its electricity mix mean that the longer term future of the site remains uncertain but we are very pleased to have secured this 12 month contract. We will continue our consultation with employees as we complete our review of the operational requirements of the station.”

Edited from press release by Harleigh Hobbs

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