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Drax Group hails “robust” first half of 2020

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Drax Group has hailed a “robust” first half of the year, despite challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The firm’s adjusted EBITDA is up 30% compared to 2019, including the estimated £44 million (€48.8 million) impact of COVID-19. The company said its full-year adjusted EBITDA would include an estimated £60 million (€66.5 million) impact from the pandemic.

The firm’s half-year results revealed Drax’s self-supply of biomass saw a 9% reduction in cost and a 15% increase in production and improved quality compared to the same period last year. Drax is targeting five million tonnes of self-supply at £50 (€55.4) per megawatt-hour by 2027 from expanded sources of sustainable biomass.

Will Gardiner, Drax CEO, said: “With these robust half-year results, Drax is delivering for shareholders with an increased dividend while continuing to support our employees, communities, and customers during the COVID-19 crisis.

“As well as generating the flexible, reliable and renewable electricity the UK economy needs, we’re delivering against our strategy to reduce the costs of our sustainable biomass and we’re continuing to make progress pioneering world-leading bioenergy with carbon capture technologies, known as BECCS, to deliver negative emissions and help the UK meet its 2050 net-zero carbon target.

“National Grid stated that the UK can’t reach net zero by 2050 without negative emissions from bioenergy with carbon capture and storage. BECCS delivers for the environment and also provides an opportunity to create jobs and clean economic growth in the north and around the country."