Scottish Power will cut the total output of its 1100MW Cockenzie coal power station by 50% from April 2012.

With the cut in capacity, the power plant’s running time will be restricted to 20,000 hours before the end of 2015, as required by the European Union’s Large Combustion Plant Directive(LCPD).

The LCPD has ordered high carbon-emitting plants to close down or install carbon reducing technologies at the units.

The coal plant’s four units are expected to remain operational and will be deployed strategically to make the most efficient use of the remaining running hours, reports Reuters.

Britain will lose around 12GW in coal and oil-fired capacity under the LCPD by December 2015.