EDF has revealed it will end generation at its sole remaining coal-fired power station, West Burton An electrical station, in September 2022, two years ahead of a Government deadline.
Over the following 18 months two of the four 500MW coal units is going to be available purely to meet capacity market commitments, in order to assist with security of supply. The station, near Retford in Nottinghamshire, will transfer to decommissioning by 30 September 2022.
EDF’s Md for the Generation business, Matt Sykes, said: “West Burton A and its loyal workforce have played a vital role providing power to the united kingdom for 55 years, including during this recent Winter.
“Since 1966, the station has produced enough electricity to meet the needs of all UK households for more than 4 years, a truly incredible achievement.
“With EDF’s power generation strategy firmly focused on nuclear and renewables – and in this key year for UK leadership on global warming – we now believe it is the right time to provide clarity to our employees and all sorts of those connected to the site.”
Consultation with the station’s workforce of 170 will begin soon. EDF has worked with the three unions – GMB, Prospect and Unite – to organize for the future of West Burton A.
The full-time Union officers said: “Today’s announcement brings welcome certainty towards the dedicated West Burton A workforce about the future of the station.
“With Government policy to close all UK coal generation by 2024 we knew it had a limited future so we have been working alongside EDF to understand the implications for West Burton A and to prepare colleagues for the future.
“Understanding the date of closure allows people to make plans. Enabling a ‘Just Transition’ from coal generation is very important for that Unions.”
Mike Macdonald, of Prospect, said: “We need to be sure that the transition from traditional generation to low carbon energy is fair to individuals who have worked hard and flexibly to keep customers supplied with electricity.
“I am personally very pleased to be involved with running ‘Just Transition’ workshops for that West Burton A team over coming months once we move towards decommissioning in 2022. This should help highly skilled and valued colleagues to continue to contribute to the industry.”