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Drax, GB Railfreight extend biomass transport contract

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Drax and GB Railfreight (GBRf) have agreed to extend their biomass transport contract until 2025.

GBRf will continue to transport biomass supplies from UK ports to Drax Power Station in North Yorkshire. The teams have worked closely together for the past decade to maintain the supplies needed to run the UK’s largest power station, generating renewable power for millions of homes and businesses.

Under the terms of the contract, GBRf will run all of Drax’s tonnage from the Ports of Tyne and Liverpool to Drax Power Station. Earlier in the partnership, GBRf used wagons that had been converted from coal hoppers by adding lids and these remain in use under the new contract.

In the past year, the longstanding relationship between the two firms has helped overcome challenges such as the local floods in the North of England in February to the Drax branch line, and then the COVID-19 crisis, ensuring the lights stay on in UK homes and businesses.

“I am delighted to be continuing GBRf’s ongoing partnership with Drax,” said GBRf’s managing director John Smith. “We will continue to deliver vital supplies of sustainable biomass for a further five years, ensuring power is generated in a clean and sustainable way as well as reducing the UK’s carbon emissions.

“The announcement also comes at a time of great economic uncertainty for our country. We at GBRf remain committed to getting the UK economy back on track and having worked with Drax over the last few months during testing times, I know we will continue to work closely in the months and years to come as we emerge from the COVID-19 crisis.”

Mike Maudsley, UK portfolio generation director at Drax, commented: “GBRf’s rail deliveries are a crucial part of our global supply chain for sustainable biomass that supports thousands of jobs and delivered economic growth across the North of England while supplying renewable electricity to millions of homes and businesses.

“We’re very pleased to extend our existing contract with GBRf for another five years and we’re looking forward to continuing to work with the team.”