Up to 45 jobs under threat at Keadby power station through delays in re-commissioning
Betweern 40 to 45 jobs are under threat at a power station in Keadby after the news that re-commissioning will be delayed.
As part of a wide-ranging review of its existing thermal generation assets, SSE is to delay the re-commissioning of Keadby gas-fired Power Station.
As reported by the Scunthorpe Telegraph in November 2012, the original plans for the extension of Keadby Power would have seen 490 jobs created, in a £350m project.
This project will not be affected by the latest news.
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But between 40 to 45 jobs are under threat at the plant over the next six months.
During the last 12 months, SSE has undertaken a comprehensive programme of upgrade works at Keadby Power Station to increase its efficiency and flexibility.
The upgrade programme has proceeded successfully and is now complete, but SSE has concluded that, due to market conditions, now is not the right time to bring the plant back into operation.
Keadby Power Station will instead be "deep mothballed", meaning that many of the systems at the site will be completely shut down and that the plant will require up to a year to recommission.
Therefore, over the next six months, there will be a phased reduction in the total number of people employed at Keadby, falling from the current 55 to a total of between 10 to 15 employees by late summer.
SSE has a range of alternative local employment opportunities across its businesses which are available to the skilled employees affected by this decision.
These include locally, at Ferrybridge, Aldbrough (its gas storage facility) and its new wind farm development under construction immediately adjacent to the Keadby site.
Consequently, it has been able to identify redeployment opportunities for the vast majority of the people affected by this change.
The 'deep mothballing' will be a phased process over several months and is expected to be complete by late summer.
SSE will continually monitor market conditions but it expects Keadby to remain in this state for at least the next two years.
Following these changes, substantially fewer people will be required to operate the plant while it is "deep mothballed".
Keadby Power Station Manager Paul Goodson, said: "The economics of electricity generation at gas-fired power stations remain very poor, and they do not appear likely to improve in the short to medium term, so it makes little sense to bring Keadby back into full operation during these challenging market conditions.
"This decision has still not been an easy one to take, particularly when we have had to make it despite the successful completion of the upgrade investment and the best efforts of the team at Keadby to do everything possible to improve the productivity and efficiency of their generation plant.
"I am therefore pleased that we have already identified opportunities to retain almost all the people affected by these changes through redeployment to other roles at SSE locations nearby.
"When Keadby is required to generate electricity in the future, we should be able to operate a power station that is more flexible and efficient as a result of the investment made during 2012/13."
SSE is currently in the process of refining the planning consent it already has, to build a second 710MW CCGT plant at its Keadby site.
The decision to mothball the existing plant will not affect this and SSE will continue to progress with the development phase of what is known as 'Keadby 2'.
It does not, however, expect to make an investment decision to construct this project until at 2016 at the earliest. The construction timescales for the Keadby Wind Farm, being developed by SSE Renewables, remain unaffected.