Planning permission has been granted for a new biomass power plant on the banks of the Tees that will create 20 long term jobs, and hundreds in the construction process.
Port Clarence Biomass and Darlington-based Prism Planning have secured permission in record time for their £160m plant on land close to the northern side of the Transporter Bridge at Port Clarence.
The 49MW power station will burn waste wood and Prism Planning have promised to feed as much of the construction work as possible into the Tees Valley supply chain.
Steve Barker, managing director of Darlington based Prism Planning, commenting upon the decision said: “This is great news for Stockton and Teesside and we are pleased to have been able to help with this important project. At a time when the security of gas supplies from Russia is very much in the media spotlight after recent events it is great to see that Stockton is helping to deliver practical alternatives.
“The work required to get this permission in place has been done in a record time and it’s a tribute to all the team who have worked so well with Stockton Councils members and officers to iron out all the issues and get the permission in place.
“From day one of the project we have also worked alongside the financiers of the project and we believe this scheme will come forward rapidly on the site.”
Prism Planning intend to start work immediately on the site which is expected to be fully operation in the next couple of years.
The project is being financed by Cardiff-based renewable energy specialists Eco2, who have been involved in the entire planning process - a rare move in the funding of renewables projects.
Mr Barker explained: “It’s very unusual to have the financiers of a renewables project like this in at such an early stage. Eco2 have been involved from the very beginning and have worked with us, even throughout the local consultation process.
“We realise that putting a scheme together like this and then taking it to market to look for finance is just not efficient. There are so many intricacies involved with putting together a biomass plant that we need to work with our financiers from the word go.
The Port Clarence development is the largest type of biomass plant that can be approved at local authority level.