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ClientEarth: Drax Power scraps plan for a new power plant

ClientEarth’s opposition to Drax’s plans for a 3.6GW gas mega plant in North Yorkshire began in 2018. ClientEarth reported then that the plant would be responsible for as much as 75% of the emissions budget for the entire UK power sector, once fully operational.

They argued that if these plans were to receive the green light, they would fundamentally undermine the government’s net zero targets and its broader ambitions to show genuine leadership on climate change. Despite their legal challenge, the Court of Appeal upheld the government’s approval of the plant.

However, in February 2021, after mounting legal and environmental pressure, Drax Power performed a dramatic U-turn and communicated its decision to abandon the project. 

Following the announcement, Drax’s CEO publicly stated: “The future of gas power generation fuel is getting shorter all the time.” This is a significant win for the UK’s short-term emissions.