COVID-19 delays construction of 299 MW biomass power plant in UK

By Erin Voegele | March 26, 2020

Construction on the Tees Renewable Energy Plant (Tees REP) a 299 megawatt (MW) biomass power plant in the U.K. was suspended on March 24 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A small number of critical maintenance staff remain onsite. MGT, the owner and operator of Tees REP, did not indicate when construction on the facility might resume.

“Construction at Tees REP was suspended on 24 March 2020 pending additional preparations being made by MGT Teesside Ltd’s (MGT) contractors and subcontractors to comply with new and evolving government guidance concerning public health protocols in light of Covid-19,” the company said in a statement. “This action has been taken to protect the health and safety of a large workforce on site, and ensure that a reduced workforce can return to site to continue key construction activities. At this point in time, only a small number of critical maintenance staff remain on site, following all social distancing protocols in compliance with U.K. central government guidance.”

The Tees REP facility has been under development for several years. The European Union approved U.K. state aid for the facility on January 2015. MGT Teesside announced in August 2016 that financing arrangements for the plant had been finalized. That same month, Enviva announced its previously announced take-or-pay offtake contract to supply wood pellets to the facility was firm. Tees REP was scheduled to become operational in 2020. MGT did not comment on how the COVID-19-related delay could impact that timeline.