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Transmission charges costing Peterhead Power Station

Peterhead Power Station
Peterhead Power Station

An MP yesterday slammed transmission charges which are putting jobs at Peterhead Power Station at risk.

Ninety staff have been under a cloud of uncertainty at the station in Boddam since its owner, SSE, said it was reviewing the facility’s future.

The review was prompted after the station lost out in a third auction to supply capacity to the UK grid in the event of an energy shortage earlier this year.

At the time, the firm said the site’s remote location put it at a disadvantage because it paid more than auction rivals to transmit energy to the grid.

Banff and Buchan MP Eilidh Whiteford has now branded the charges “disproportionate”.

“The current transmission charge regime puts Peterhead at a big disadvantage, even though gas comes ashore just a few miles away,” she said.

“Ofgem is directly accountable to the government and I would ask the department to look again and reconsider the transmission charge regime.”

Transmission charges for Peterhead Power Station in the year ahead are an estimated £19.60 per kilowatt compared with a gas-fired power station in Kent which is expected to pay only £1.75.

Banffshire and Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson added: “We simply cannot allow for the growing disparity surrounding transmission charges to continue which will immediately put a site which is already at risk of closure on the continued backfoot.”

A spokeswoman at Perth-based SSE has refused to say how long its review would take, but said it would “engage with all stakeholders”.

“The review will not impact current operations at the station. Once the review has been conducted, we will share more information,” she added.

Uncertainty has dogged the 35-year-old power plant since the UK Government controversially scrapped a £1billion plan that could have seen it used for a groundbreaking carbon capture and storage (CCS) project.

Energy giants Shell and SSE had earmarked Peterhead Power Station as a world-first demonstration site before the scheme was scrapped in 2015.

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