Fresh hope for power station bid

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PLANS for a clean coal power station have received a major boost with ten firms interested in taking over the developers behind the scheme.

Stainforth-based Powerfuel, which announced proposals for the development at Hatfield Colliery, went into administration last year after failing to attract enough investment, placing the scheme at risk.

However, administrators have now announced that they have received expressions of interest.

And the business was due to continue to move forward with plans to submit an application for funding for the power station scheduled to take place yesterday.

A spokesman for administrators KPMG said: “We’ve had ten expressions of interest in the business.

“The offers give the administrators a lot to think about. They will compare the offers and see what would be best for the business.

“They are going to be spending time carefully reviewing the expressions of interest.”

The funding application was for European carbon trading credits – effectively a grant which would add to the cash available for taking the plans for the clean coal power station forward.

The spokesman added: “We’ve said before, it is very much business as usual. An example of that is the deadline to apply for carbon trading credits. These relate to trading in carbon once the business becomes active.”

Powerfuel had been awarded a £160 million European Union grant, but failed to attract the private funds needed. The company is also in need of cash for work which needs to be carried out on the colliery.

Powerful is owned by former UK Coal boss Richard Budge and Russian mining firm KRU.

The planned 900mw power station would see most of the carbon dioxide created from burning coal filtered out and piped into underground storage space below the North Sea.

It is expected to create hundreds of jobs if it becomes a reality.