February 2024 UK Project Management Round Up


Good News (DRAX, Nuclear Power Expansion),

Bad News (New Nuclear, HS2 Fallout), APM News,

HORIZON and comments on Rewilding



By Miles Shepherd

Executive Advisor & International Correspondent

Salisbury, England, UK


This has been a quiet month as far as projects are concerned.  The main news remains the Horizon debacle but no one is blaming the Project Manager (more about this later).  The Association for Project Management, on the other hand, has been busy and there is some news on the energy front.


Not all readers will feel this is good news but the idea of reducing carbon emissions is always important.  The latest here in UK comes from DRAX.  Situated in the North Yorkshire countryside, DRAX is a major fossil fueled power station that has been trying to be less polluting in recent years.  First steps were to convert four of its units from coal-fired generation to burning biomass wood pellets in order to qualify for renewable energy subsidies on the basis that trees absorb carbon as they grow, offsetting the carbon emitted when they are burnt.  This attracted some £617 million from energy billpayers in 2023 but was seen by many as sailing close to the wind as the fuel primarily ships in from North America, so the idea has long been controversial.

DRAX Power Station – Image: www.gov.uk

The latest wheeze is to convert at least one of the coal-fired generating units to so-called BECCS, or bioenergy with carbon capture and storage, by 2030.  According to the Draz Group press release, they plan to spend billions of pounds on building facilities to capture and store carbon emissions from two of its four biomass units.

Carbon capture and storage works by capturing carbon dioxide where it is generated – sites such as oil refineries, chemical plants and fossil fuel driven plants.  We reported on the process last year but as a reminder, it is illustrated below.

Graphic: The Times

Capturing it at source is claimed to p[event releasing it into the atmosphere and contributing to climate change.  The planned carbon capture units will remove eight million tonnes of carbon from the atmosphere each year, according to Drax Group.  The power plant would then become carbon-negative.


To read entire report, click here

How to cite this report: Shepherd, M. (2024). UK Project Management Roundup, report, PM World Journal, Vol. XIII, Issue II, February. Available online at https://pmworldlibrary.net/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/pmwj138-Feb2024-Shepherd-UK-project-management-roundup-report.pdf

About the Author

Miles Shepherd

Salisbury, UK


 Miles Shepherd is an executive editorial advisor and international correspondent for PM World Journal in the United Kingdom. He is also managing director for MS Projects Ltd, a consulting company supporting various UK and overseas Government agencies, nuclear industry organisations and other businesses.  Miles has over 30 years’ experience on a variety of projects in UK, Eastern Europe and Russia.  His PM experience includes defence, major IT projects, decommissioning of nuclear reactors, nuclear security, rail and business projects for the UK Government and EU.  His consulting work has taken him to Japan, Taiwan, USA and Russia.  Past Chair and Fellow of the Association for Project Management (APM), Miles is also past president and chair and a Fellow of the International Project Management Association (IPMA).  He was, for seven years, a Director for PMI’s Global Accreditation Centre and is immediate past Chair of the ISO committee developing new international standards for Project Management and for Program/Portfolio Management.  He is currently Chairman of the British Standards Institute project management committee.  He was involved in setting up APM’s team developing guidelines for project management oversight and governance.  Miles is based in Salisbury, England and can be contacted at miles.shepherd@msp-ltd.co.uk.

To view other works by Miles Shepherd, visit his author showcase in the PM World Library at http://pmworldlibrary.net/authors/miles-shepherd/.