A pivotal low-carbon development in Aberdeenshire continues to gain momentum with the award of a major contract announced yesterday.
SSE Thermal and Equinor are developing what could become Scotland’s first flexible power station fitted with carbon capture technology and have appointed a consortium to deliver the FEED (Front End Engineering Design) contract.
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Group, Worley and Técnicas Reunidas will provide a detailed plan for the Peterhead carbon capture plant, which would have a generating capacity of up to 910 MW.
The station would connect to the Scottish cluster’s CO2 transport and storage infrastructure, which underpins plans to deliver one of the UK’s first low-carbon industrial clusters.
The current Peterhead Power Station plays a vital role in maintaining lighting and is crucial to Scotland’s electricity system. However, there is a clear need to decarbonise power generation and the proposed Peterhead Carbon Capture Power Station represents this next phase of society’s energy transition – helping to achieve net zero targets in Scotland and the UK , while providing flexible support for Scotland’s growth. renewable energy sector and strengthen security of supply.
The UK government has set ambitious targets for the country to become a world leader in carbon capture and storage, and Peterhead Carbon Capture will play a central role with the ability to capture up to 1.5 MT of carbon per year, which is about 5% of the government’s 2030 target.
A recent report by SSE Thermal and Equinor shows that the new development would create significant economic benefits in the transition to net zero, with £60 million expected to be contributed to the economy of Aberdeen City and the Shire during development and construction, with 980 years of sustained employment. Over the station’s operational life, it is estimated that around £25 million will be added to the wider Aberdeen economy each year, with around 240 jobs supported on an annual basis.
Catherine Raw, Managing Director of SSE Thermal, said: “As renewables grow, the importance of flexible power only increases – but this production needs to be decarbonized, which is why we have committed to this historic carbon capture project in Peterhead.
“As we start working with the consortium on the engineering design, we hope to see the UK government recognize the need for more CCS power plants when they provide an update on cluster sequencing later this month. Basically , it must clarify the Scottish cluster and accelerate its development, which is necessary if Scotland’s net zero ambitions are to be achieved.
Grete Tveit, Senior Vice President for Low Carbon Solutions at Equinor, said: “This is an important step in delivering on our ambition to build Scotland’s first flexible power station equipped with carbon capture technology.
“By providing low-carbon backup power to supplement intermittent renewable energy generation, the Peterhead Carbon Capture Plant will improve energy security throughout the energy transition. We are excited to work with SSE Thermal and the Consortium to deliver on this critical project, unlocking investments that will bring both local jobs and value to the supply chain.
Bradley Andrews, Chairman of Worley, on behalf of the consortium Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Group, Worley and Técnicas Reunidas, said: “Cooperation with a common vision is key to the energy transition. The consortium’s work with SSE Thermal and Equinor is an example of how companies can collaborate to meet the challenge of reaching net zero.
“This project will produce flexible, clean energy enabling additional renewable generation while reducing carbon emissions on a large scale. This is a historic project for Scotland in its ambitions to help decarbonise industrial clusters in the UK – and it supports our efforts to create a more sustainable world.
An S36 planning application for the project was submitted to the Scottish Government’s Energy Consents Unit in March this year.