The first images of the Thomas Heatherwick-designed biomass power plant in Stockton-on-Tees have been released.
The £150m project, masterminded by power company Bio Energy Investments, will see the facility produce enough power to supply 50,000 homes.
The power station occupies only a third of its brownfield site on the banks of the river Tees, with the remaining 4ha to be transformed by the Heatherwick Studio team into natural grassland. The site is currently barren with little or no ecology, and the project will create a suitable habitat for the rare flora and fauna that return to industrial sites such as this.
Palm kernel shells – the leftovers, or by-products, of palm oil plantations – will fuel the station. The benefit of this is that no land will be diverted from food production or from forestry for the fuel. It will also provide the palm growers with additional revenue and clears away a waste product that they cannot use themselves.