North Blyth Biomass Power Station site

Renewable energy company RES has secured approval from the UK government to construct a 99.9MW biomass power station at Blyth Harbour, Northumberland.

Located at Battleship Wharf in Northumberland’s Blyth Estuary, the £250m biomass power plant is expected to generate enough electricity to meet the annual electricity needs of around 170,000 homes in Northumberland.

RES said the North Blyth biomass power station is its first biomass development, and joins its portfolio of onshore and offshore wind, as well as solar energy projects.

Construction is expected to commence in 2014 and take approximately two and a half years to complete.

RES project manager Chris Lawson said the approval will play an important part in the growing renewable energy industry in south-east Northumberland.

"Construction is expected to commence in 2014 and take approximately two and a half years to complete."

"It is also a welcome confirmation of the government’s support for sustainable, low carbon energy projects which will make a significant contribution towards meeting the UK’s legally-binding 2020 renewable energy targets," Lawson said.

A Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) spokesman said sustainably sourced biomass has an important role to play as part of a balanced energy mix, enhancing energy security and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

"If constructed, this development will help bring jobs and growth to the local economy," DECC spokesman said.

RES has developed and/or built more than 7.5GW of wind energy capacity globally and in UK alone, and currently has more than 1,000MW of onshore wind energy either constructed, under construction or consented.

Image: Proposed site of North Blyth Biomass power station. Photo: courtesy of George Hurrell.