RWE Power is planning to build a 1600 MW coal-fired twin unit at its existing Ensdorf site in Germany’s Saarland at a cost of €2 billion.

“We want to build one of the world’s most modern hard-coal-fired power stations in Ensdorf: highly efficient, low on emissions and with a positive impact on the labour market”, stated Dr Ulrich Jobs, chief executive officer of RWE Power. Jobs added that the new lant will have an efficiency of 46% and will be designed to be carbon capture-ready.

Operational start-up for the plant is planned for 2012 at the latest.

In related news, the UK arm of the company, RWE npower, has said it would also commit around £60 million ($120 million) to upgrade equipment at its existing ‘Didcot B’ gas power station to improve efficiency as part of its strategy to cut carbon emissions by a third (compared to 2000) by 2015. Andrew Duff, chief executive of RWE npower said: “We will close our existing coal power stations at Didcot and Tilbury by 2015.”