A PIONEERING Yorkshire project which will help create thousands of jobs and provide clean power to 630,000 homes was backed with millions of pounds from the European Union today.
The EU confirmed the White Rose Project, centred on the Drax power station near Selby, will receive Euros 300 million.
It will see the building of a new power plant with harmful gases captured and piped for storage under the North Sea.
White Rose itself is expected to support around 2,000 jobs but is likely to help create many more as it kickstarts the wider carbon capture and storage (CCs) industry in Yorkshire.
The region is seen as a prime location for CCS because of its history of power generation and heavy industry and proximity to the North Sea.
Energy and Climate Change Secretary Edward Davey said: “This is great news for Yorkshire and for Britain. White Rose will create thousands of green, local jobs and make a real difference to cutting carbon emissions.
“The UK is at the forefront of developing carbon capture and storage, with excellent potential for storage in the North and Irish Seas, and the expertise in operating offshore to make it a reality.
“And as a world leader in the technology, as carbon capture and storage is commercialised Britain will be in first place to export this knowledge to a decarbonising global economy.”
Yorkshire MEP Linda McAvan, who played a key role setting up the EU fund which is backing the White Rose Project, said: “I am delighted to see that the EU is investing in the White Rose project.
“As well as the immediate jobs that the CCS project would create, the potential to export this technology, once developed, could also bring untold economic benefits to our region.”
The White Rose Project is a joint venture between Drax, Alstom and BOC.
Chief executive Leigh Hackett said: “We are well on track to demonstrate the key role that CCS can play in the future UK energy mix. CCS is an important technology providing clean, reliable and cost competitive electricity with the potential to contribute greatly to the decarbonisation of global power markets.”