As a first step, the existing distillate fuelled Open Cycle Gas Turbine (OCGT) peaking plant on the site can be converted to gas upon completion of a gas pipeline supply to Kilroot. The gas pipeline supply project recently received planning permission.
The next step is the replacement of the existing coal fired units at Kilroot with new cleaner and more flexible gas generation. This will ensure the transition towards lower carbon generation as well as protecting security and stability of supply for Northern Ireland through the continuation of indigenous generation. This technology will be delivered via competitive capacity auctions and will be fuelled initially by natural gas. It is envisaged that it will also be capable of using gas alternatives, such as biogas and hydrogen, as they become available to the market.
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With the potential for up to £600m of investment in a range of technologies and electricity generation solutions, it aims to be one of the most important milestones in the decarbonisation of our electricity generation system.