Financial close for Uskmouth conversion could be delayed

By Erin Voegele | April 14, 2020

Simec Atlantis Energy Ltd. announced on April 14 that the target financial close date for its Uskmouth Power Station conversion project in the U.K. may be delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic and associated ongoing workplace disruptions.

Atlantis said work programs related to the Uskmouth conversion are under review as the company adapts to the constraints imposed by the pandemic. “Given this backdrop, it is reasonable to expect some delay to our target financial close date, which was previously set as Q3 2020,” the company said in its statement. Atlantis also noted that essential project development works are continuing in order to minimize any delay. The company plans to make further updates on the revised timelines for financial close when available.

The combustion system design contract that was awarded to Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Europe GmbH in October 2019 is ongoing and remains on scheduled to be completed this summer, Atlantis said. The company also said the project’s permit variation for the new waste fuel was submitted to Natural Resources Wales in December 2019 and is now open for public consultation. NRW published a notice opening the public consultation on March 26. The consultation is currently scheduled to be open through May 8.

The waste pellets the company proposes to fuel the Uskmouth Power Station with will be composed of approximately 50 percent plastic and 50 percent paper, cardboard, wood or similar material.

In March, Atlantis announced it had produced 100 metric tons of its waste-derived fuel pellets for large-scale combustion testing. The company also said it completed large-scale milling tests. “This is a key milestone for the project and provides further confidence that the energy pellets developed as a high calorific value, low-cost alternative to coal are able to be produced in commercial quantities and can be milled using industry standard designs,” Atlantis said in a statement issued March 2.

At that time, the company said the next stage for the project will be for MHPS Europe to conduct final large-scale combustion trials at its 24 megawatt facility to validate combustion system design. That trial is expected to take place during the second quarter of this year.