November 6, 2008

E.ON UK Begins Construction of Gas Storage Facility in Cheshire

E.ON UK, an integrated power and natural gas company, has begun solution-mining at all eight caverns at its Holford gas storage facility in Cheshire, UK.

The solution mining, or leaching, process sees seven billion gallons of water pumped into salt deposits underground to create eight massive underground caverns that will eventually be used for gas storage.

Once complete, the facility will have the capacity to store up to 165 million cubic meters of gas, equivalent to around half of the UK's average daily gas demand.

The caverns will be developed over a period of five years and will all undergo an extensive program of testing before commissioning. The first three caverns are expected to be ready for use in 2011. E.ON also has plans to develop a second, larger, gas storage facility near Aldbrough in East Yorkshire.

Paul Golby, CEO of E.ON UK, said: "We are delighted to have reached this milestone in a project which will play a key role in helping to ensure security of gas supplies, while also providing some protection for our customers against the extreme price volatility of natural gas."