Construction work has started on a 260,000 tonnes per year capacity waste wood biomass energy plant in Rotherham, the Danish-owned developers of the facility have announced.
Templeborough Biomass Power Plant Ltd, which is owned by management firm Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners K/S (CIP), said on Friday (November 13) that below ground work for the facility has now been completed.
Several redundant structures which had previously been on the site have also been demolished and “much of the concrete and other building materials recycled” are to be used for new buildings.
To mark the start of construction, a new dedicated website has also been launched for the facility featuring footage from a time-lapse camera providing a bird’s eye view of developments on the site that is updated every 15 minutes.
Construction work follows a six month clearance of the Templeborough site, which is situated near that village of Ickles and had operated as a steelworks since 1871.
Work started on the site in March 2015 after the development received planning permission from Rotherham council in 2014.
Once operational in August 2017, the plant will generate around 41MW of electricity each year, which is enough to supply energy to around 78,000 homes and save more than 150,000 tonnes of CO2.
Waste wood biomass feedstock for the plant will be sourced and processed by Stobart Biomass Products Ltd – part of the Stobart Group – under a multi-million pound, long term deal.
According to the developers: “A large proportion of this waste wood fuel will be collected locally from municipal waste sites where it is segregated from other wastes, from construction sites, and other industrial and commercial waste collections, after which it will be processed and shredded for use as a fuel in our biomass plant.”
Templeborough Biomass Power Plant Ltd adds that the “Yorkshire and Humber region alone generates over twice the amount of waste wood that is required by our plant”.
Meanwhile, GDF Suez has agreed a 15-year power purchase agreement to buy all of the electricity produced by the plant (see letsrecycle.com story). The energy firm also has similar agreements with Snetterton biomass plant in Norfolk and waste management firm Amey’s Allerton Waste Recovery Park in North Yorkshire.
Interserve Construction Ltd and Babcock & Wilcox Vølund have been contracted to build the power plant, with Babcock & Wilcox Vølund taking on the operation of the plant once it has been constructed.
The developers said the facility would put Ickles “at the forefront of the renewable energy sector” and would allow the site to “continue providing employment and investment opportunities to the local community”.
General manager of Templeborough Biomass Power Plant Ltd, Tim Forrest, said: “The construction teams have been working hard since March and they have now progressed the project to the point where we are starting to see the buildings take shape right across the site, which is really fantastic. We have also received great support and advice from Rotherham Investment & Development Office and also the council’s planning team, who have assisted us right through the planning and consenting process.”
He added that the plant was “still on course for an opening in late summer 2017” and that the new website would help to keep local people informed of progress on the site.
Mr Forrest commented: “It is an exciting time for us and we want to make sure that our community feels involved with our project as it develops.”