Energy firm Sembcorp Utilities has been granted a development consent order (DCO) for the Tees Combined Cycle Power Plant on the Wilton International site in Redcar and Cleveland.
According to the firm, the power plant would generate a net electrical output of up to 1,700 megawatts.
Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council supported the DCO application and had allocated the site for specialist industries and sui generis uses in the authority’s local plan.
The DCO received a recommendation of approval from a Planning Inspectorate examiner in January this year.
The secretary of state noted that "it was widely held in relevant representations and amongst
interested parties that the socio-economic effects of the development would be beneficial to employment and the economy".
Sembcorp Utilities has agreed a section 106 agreement with Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council committing to "use reasonable endeavours to maximise job opportunities for local residents" and "to open up opportunities for local businesses to bid for development contracts".
"The secretary of state considers that there is a compelling case for granting consent," the decision letter said.
It added: "Given the national need for the proposed development, as set out in the relevant National Policy Statements ... the secretary of state does not believe that this is outweighed by the development’s potential adverse local impacts."
Sembcorp Utilities submitted the application to the Planning Inspectorate (PINS) in November 2017 and it was accepted for examination the following month.
According to PINS, it is the third major infrastrucure project to be approved this year, following DCOs granted for a new port at Tilbury Dock in February and last month for a gas-fired power station in Bedfordshire.
In September last year the business secretary approved a DCO for a gas-fired power station on the site of an existing coal-fired plant at Eggborough in North Yorkshire, after concluding that there was a "compelling case" for the plant.
The following month, Highways England applied for a DCO to build a dual carriageway road tunnel close to Stonehenge in Wiltshire.