The owners of the Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) terminal in Milford Haven have confirmed to ITV Wales that they are looking at the potential for a new power station at their facility. The company say that their plans for a combined heat and power gas fired station at South Hook are in their early stages and that they are in discussions with their shareholders but that no formal plans have yet been submitted.
Milford Haven already has one power station under construction at Pembroke Dock. The £1bn gas-fuelled power station is set to be operational by the end of the year. There are also two LNG terminals as well as two oil refineries.
The oil, gas and energy generation sector employs 1,200 direct jobs in the area. Across the whole of Wales 3,300 people are employed in the sector. The area's oil refinery accounts for more than 20% of the UK capacity.
Professor Max Munday from the Cardiff Business School published a report recently looking at the economic impact of the energy sector on the Milford Haven area. He says the area has the infrastructure to support more power stations.
– Professor Max Munday, Cardiff Business School
Whether it is biomass or gas fired capacity, the infrastructure is there to support further development and it would be very welcome. Already plans are advancing for an enterprise zone around the haven and additional power infrastructure would certainly add to the case.
Recently it was announced that the Welsh Government plans to create an enterprise zone in the area to encourage further development of the energy sector in the area.
The LNG terminals at Milford Haven opened in 2009 to protests from some local people about the safety of the facility. Since then campaigners have taken their battle to the European Court of Human rights to argue that bringing the liquefied gas into Milford Haven was against the law. Last month the court ruled against them. But despite this, any new development is likely to be controversial. The environmental group Friends of the Earth have so far welcomed the move, but say it's important there are no damaging environmental impacts on the Pembrokeshire Marine Special Area of Conservation.