World's biggest biomass power plant coming to Wales

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain has given the all clear to plans for the world’s biggest biomass power plant in south Wales, Energy Secretary John Hutton said on Wednesday.

The 400-million pound, 350-megawatt power plant proposed by Prenergy for Port Talbot will burn wood from sustainable sources in North America, and represents 70 percent of the Welsh Assembly’s total renewable energy target for 2010, when it is expected to begin operations.

“This will be the biggest biomass plant in the world, generating enough clean electricity to power half of the homes in Wales,” Hutton said in a statement.

Burning organic matter like wood chips and some crops helps reduce total emissions of carbon dioxide from the energy sector because, unlike oil, gas and coal, the trees and plants absorb the planet-warming gas as they grow before they are used for fuel.

Reporting by Daniel Fineren