Family Affair Mary J. Blige
23 March 2015, 12:44
A controversial biomass power station in Southampton will no longer go ahead - due to financial problems at the company behind it.
Helius Energy is selling a controlling stake in the firm for £12.3 million and delisting from the stock exchange.
Helius had wanted to build the £300 million power station, which would have a 100 metre high chimney, in Millbrook. The firm said it would create enough energy to supply around 200,000 homes.
People living near to where the plant would be built - as well as the City Council and local MPs - had fought the proposals, worried the development would overshadow their homes and cause pollution.
The company later said it would reduce the size of the buildings.
Steven Galton, from campaign group No Southampton Biomass, said:
"This is the news we have all been waiting for! It is a shame Helius previously refused to admit what we all knew, their plans just didn't stack up. Despite their claims, their energy has never been green. However the proof is in the pudding as Helius finally admit defeat and No Southampton Biomass have been proven correct!
"It should be remembered it was a small community pulling and lobbying together via our ROC Off campaign that led to the Government changing the subsidy system to only recognise genuine Combined Heat and Power (CHP) projects for subsidies.
"Southampton City Council previously made it clear they would not be a heat customer for Helius and it was at this point No Southampton Biomass knew their plans were a dead duck.
"With the deadline for planning permission for their Avonmouth project looming Helius have been unable to find the funding to start the project. This was Helius' last hope for solvency.
"Better late than never Helius have finally admitted they have no future and No Southampton Biomass can finally relax and celebrate!"