February 3, 2020 / 10:52 AM / 24 days ago

UPDATE 1-UK capacity auction secures 45.1 GW of backup power

* EDF Energy fails to secure Hinkley Point B agreements

* Drax fails to get agreements for two remaining coal units (Adds detail)

LONDON, Feb 3 (Reuters) - British energy companies SSE , EDF Energy and Drax are among the winners of power capacity contracts awarded for backup electricity up to three years in advance.

The capacity market is a British government scheme to pay energy providers to maintain spare capacity to ensure adequate supply for future years.

The latest auction on Friday for capacity in 2022/23 secured a total of 45.06 gigawatts (GW) of back-up electricity capacity and cleared at 6.44 pounds ($8.41) per kilowatt per year.

EDF Energy secured one-year agreements for the period Oct. 2022 to Sept. 2023 for 12 nuclear reactor units with a total of 5.9 GW of capacity; three units at its West Burton gas-fired power plant and two battery storage units.

It failed to secure agreements for the two nuclear units at its Hinkley Point B plant.

“Although Hinkley Point B entered into the auction and we are confident it will operate to its scheduled closure date of 2023, it exited above the clearing price and therefore did not get an agreement,” EDF Energy said in a statement.

Drax secured agreements to provide nearly 2.6 GW of capacity from gas, pumped storage and hydro assets which are worth 15 million pounds in the 2022-23 period.

However, it said did not get agreements for its two remaining coal units at its Drax power station in Yorkshire and will assess options for these assets.

Energy supplier SSE secured capacity contracts for nearly 2.8 GW of electricity generation capacity for gas-fired, hydroelectric and pumped storage capacity.

It did not get contracts for three of its gas-fired power stations - Medway, Keadby 1 and 2.

“While our Medway, Keadby 1 and Keadby 2 stations have not been awarded capacity contracts in this auction, this will not impact our existing operations and we will have further opportunities to secure contracts in future auctions,” Martin Pibworth, SSE’s energy director, said.

$1 = 0.7653 pounds Reporting by Nina Chestney; editing by Barbara Lewis

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