Power generator Drax this morning said that it would hike its interim dividend a tenth after getting back into profit in the first half of the year.
For the first half, the FTSE 250 firm reported profit from continuing operations of £84m, swinging back into the black after a £57m loss last year.
Energy firms have bounced back this year after last spring’s coronavirus lockdowns saw power demad shrink as large parts of the economy were put on standby.
As a result, Drax said that it would increase its payout to 7.5p per share.
Despite the loosening of restrictions, the firm still took a £10-15m hit from Covid in the first half, down from a £44m hit in 2020.
Today’s results came as Drax, the UK’s largest supplier of renewable power, said that it had reduced emissions from its power generation operations by 90 per cent.
Drax, which has converted four coal-power units to use sustainable biomass and also owns hydropower plants, said its remaining two coal units closed for commercial operations during the half.
Chief executive Will Gardiner said: “We have had a great first half of the year, transforming Drax into the world’s leading sustainable biomass generation and supply company as well as the UK’s largest generator of renewable power.
“The business has performed well, and we have exciting growth opportunities to support the global transition to a low-carbon economy.
“Drax has reduced its generation emissions by over 90 per cent, and we are very proud to be one of the lowest carbon intensity power generators in Europe – a huge transformation for a business which less than a decade ago operated the largest coal power station in Western Europe.”