Marco McGinty, whose home in Largs is just five miles from the site of the proposed development at Hunterston in Ayrshire, asked the Court of Session in Edinburgh to rule against the present plan.
But his criticism of the public consultation procedures was rejected.
Mr McGinty went back to court to challenge judge Lord Brailsford's decision, but yesterday appeal judges backed the earlier ruling. At an earlier stage, Mr McGinty, pleading that he was jobless, had successfully obtained a court order limiting the expenses he would have to pay if he lost.
But the Scottish Ministers can still ask him for up to £30,000 to pay for their costs incurred in defending their planning decision. Mr McGinty also hired his own legal team, although a solicitor has been helping him by working for free.
Judge Lord Brailsford had also ruled that Mr McGinty's demand for a judicial review was doomed because he had waited too long before coming to court and because he did not have a strong enough reason to raise his action.
When the planning row was aired in court in November 2010, Mr McGinty said he used the Hunterston area for recreation and the effects on the environment would be devastating if the coal-fired power station went ahead.
Residents resisting the plan set up Communities Opposed to New Coal at Hunterston (Conch).
They claim the 1600MW power station will have a serious impact on the community and that tonnes of ash being pumped into the air will be a threat to health.
Since 1971, the Hunterston site has been ear-marked for heavy industrial development of some sort.
The area's future became part of a National Planning Framework for Scotland - a policy document that has had a bearing on other plans such as the Commonwealth Games preparations and a new Forth Road Bridge.
The campaigners said Hunterston was only added to the planning framework document at a late stage, limiting opportunities to protest.
Lord Brailsford said previous court actions had established rules about who had the right to bring court actions in planning disputes.
He added that it was neither desirable nor necessary that public bodies should be subject to persons, no matter how well-intentioned, whose links to a site were as remote as Mr McGinty's.
He said that in any case he would still have ruled there was no breach of the rules on public consultation.
Mr McGinty's appeal against the October 2011 ruling claimed Lord Brailsford's rejection of his right to sue had been overturned by a Supreme Court decision in another case.
He also claimed the judge had been wrong in believing that there had been sufficient publicity about the Hunterston proposals to allow locals to object, and argued that Scottish Ministers had not looked properly at alternatives to their power station plan.
Mr McGinty also complained that the £30,000 cap set on the expenses he might have to find for the other side was too high.
Lord Clarke, sitting with Lord Brodie and Lord Kingarth, rejected his arguments.
Reacting to the case, Friends of the Earth Scotland Head of Campaigns Mary Church said: "While it's good news that the Court recognised Mr McGinty's right to take this case in the public interest, it is very disappointing that it has not taken this opportunity to reduce Mr McGinty's costs from an exorbitant £30,000 to a more reasonable £5000 as reflected in the new rules of court."