Macquarie is considering a sale of three British gas-fired power stations capable of supplying 6% of the country’s energy needs. It is understood to be looking at offloading Calon Energy, which owns Sutton Bridge in Lincolnshire and Baglan Bay and Severn Power, both in south Wales. The Australian bank bought the plants in 2012 and 2013 alongside Canadian and Middle Eastern investors, betting on a surge in the profitability of gas generation as ageing coal plants were forced to close. The stations, which have a combined output of 2.2 gigawatts (GW), are designed to kick in at times of peak demand. However, gas generators have struggled to make good returns in recent years amid tough power markets. Centrica sold its two remaining big gas plants, with a combined 2.3GW capacity, for £318m last year. The possible sale also reflects how the power sector has been upended by the falling cost of renewable generation. Big centralised power stations are increasingly being replaced with distributed generation, such as solar panels and wind turbines linked to battery storage.
Times 22nd April 2018 read more »