‘Yes in my back yard’ for Energos clean energy recovery


Source: ENER-G

‘Small is beautiful’ for UK-based energy from waste business Energos (www.energos.com) whose environmentally friendly advanced thermal conversion process has just received its sixth UK planning consent at Kirk Sandall, Doncaster.

This £75m partnership with Biogen Power www.biogenpower.com will provide a community-sized facility to handle Doncaster’s local waste – diverting it from landfill. It has the capacity to treat 120,000 tonnes per year of non-recyclable household and commercial waste – converting it into renewable electricity to power 18,000 homes, and heat and steam for neighbouring businesses.

Over the past three years, six planning applications based on the Energos gasification technology have been submitted and all six have received consent within ten months of the application date. The Doncaster permission was achieved in just five months and none of the schemes has been subject to planning appeal.

Said Nick Dawber, Managing Director of Energos: “Our model is to create small sized plants that can exist at the heart of a community, and handle the local leftover waste that the community cannot recycle. Residents, businesses and local governments recognise that it’s not possible to continue sending waste to landfill and our 100% planning record suggests that they are prepared to accept appropriately sized, new generation technology solutions to deal responsibly with their own waste.

“Another reason why the Energos approach is proving acceptable is that traffic movements in and out of the site are minimised due to the small scale of the facility. Also, because the site footprint is small (typically three acres) we can readily find brownfield sites within existing industrial areas. This proximity to industry also means we have access to customers who can utilise the combined heat and power capability of the plants to ensure they run at maximum energy efficiency.”

Added Christian Reeve, BioGen Power’s CEO stated, ‘’In Doncaster the ‘small scale’ nature of the technology and application, local sustainability and the proven operational record of Energos plants in Europe and the Isle of Wight, clearly won the hearts and minds of the planning committee. Construction will take two years and we plan to start in late 2010, creating up to 200 jobs, many of which will be locally sourced. Once operational, the facility will provide some 30 green collar jobs with a similar number being created within third party support services.”

Energos, part of sustainable power group ENER-G plc (www.energ.co.uk), has a 12-year track record at its six Northern European advanced thermal conversion facilities. The recent opening of its Isle of Wight plant brings the total of operational plants to seven, with an eighth plant on target to open next year in Sarpsborg, Norway, and five UK plants (Newport, Irvine, Lincolnshire, Knowsley and Doncaster) set to begin operation in 2012. The Newport, Irvine and Doncaster projects are all being delivered in partnership with Biogen Power, which plans to build a further nine Energos plants in the UK.

Energos technology is also at the heart of other proposed schemes in Derbyshire, Bristol and Londonderry, with a strong pipeline of interest across Europe. In the UK alone, the company has a total 510,000 tonnes per annum of processing capacity consented with a further 220,000 tonnes per annum capacity currently being considered by planners.

In Europe, Energos offers the only proven and commercially viable gasification technology capable of generating renewable energy from municipal waste and post-recycling residue. It offers a clean energy recovery from waste solution that provides a best practice alternative to mass-burn incineration and a commercially proven and bankable alternative to landfill.

A typical Energos plant generates 8MW of green electricity – providing the equivalent renewable energy output of 15 large wind turbines. It is designed to complement recycling initiatives and as a small scale solution can be sited next to energy consumers to optimise heat recovery, or in locations where a heat delivery or district heating system could be developed.

This approach complements the aims of the new EU Waste Framework Directive that sets a target of 50% recycling of waste by 2020 and recognises high efficiency energy recovery as recycling.

Energos uses its own patented gasification technology, an advanced two-stage thermal treatment process that converts residual, non-recyclable waste into a gas by using the heat of partial combustion to liberate the hydrogen and carbon within the waste. Residual waste is fed into the gasification chamber, where it is manufactured into a syngas. This syngas is then transferred to a secondary oxidation chamber where it is fully combusted in a controlled environment that enables much tighter control than can be achieved in conventional energy from waste plants – resulting in extremely low emissions. The resulting heat energy is used to produce steam, which can be used to supply renewable heat and/or electricity.

The company has an excellent track record of safe operation – achieving ultra low emissions that are significantly lower than the stringent safe limits required by the EU Emissions Standard. Most impressively, Energos plants are operating with NOx emissions of less than 25% of the EU limit, without any form of de-NOX system. At the same time CO and TOC emissions are also much lower than the limits and process stability is excellent.

The track record of all the operating Energos plants shows that dioxin emissions are typically 1% of the EU safe limit. This is achieved by the extremely effective control of the combustion of the syngas in the second stage combined with the unique design of the boiler system that cools the gas down rapidly to reduce the reformation of dioxins. Finally, any residual dioxins are removed using carbon and a filter to remove dust particles.

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