21 May 2020 by Robyn White

Permission granted for waste to fuel plant

North East Lincolnshire council has approved plans for a facility that could convert up to 500,000 tonnes per year of commercial and household waste into fuel for planes and cars.

Councillors approved plans for the plant in a virtual planning committee held yesterday, May 20. The facility is being developed by British Airways, Shell and “sustainable fuels company” Velocys, through a joint venture Altalto Immingham Ltd.

waste to fuel

An artist’s impression of the plant, developed by British Airways, Shell and Velocys

In a statement, Veolcys says it hopes construction will begin in 2022 and the facility could be producing fuel by 2025.

Velocys CEO, Henrik Wareborn said: “It’s fantastic news that the planning committee has approved our waste-to-jet fuel project, which will be a first for the UK. Sustainable aviation field are essential for decarbonising this challenging sector and achieving net zero emissions by 2050.

“That’s why Velocys are calling on the government to co-ordinate policy between departments to help us fund a fleet of world leading sustainable aviation fuel facilities in the UK.”

Thurrock

British Airways has previously been involved in plans for a gasification facility near Thurrock, Essex, which would have turned commercial and industrial waste into aviation fuel, in partnership with a company called Solena Fuels but the facility never came to fruition (see letsrecycle.com story).

Altalto’s project would be built on primarily greenfield land at a site on Hobson Way, Stallingborough, near Grimsby and Immingham docks.

Consent had been given for the development of a bio-ethanol plant on the site, but this planning permission has now lapsed. Conditional approval has been given for the development of an Energy from Waste (EfW) facility nearby by North Beck Energy.

Process

Construction of the now approved Altalto Immingham facility based on Hobson Way is now subject to additional funding and financial close. Velocys added that the construction of the facility will create 130 new jobs for the area.

According to the council, the waste brought onto the facility will be conditioned to produce a solid recovered fuel (SRF), before being converted into syngas through gasification.

“This development cements North East Lincolnshire’s place at the heart of the UK’s green industrial revolution”

Cllr Phillip Jackson, North East Lincolnshire council

The syngas will then be converted into a primary hydrocarbon liquid and conditioned into fuel. It will then be stored onsite in tanks and exported from the site in takers.

Councillor Philip Jackson of North East Lincolnshire council said: “This development cements North East Lincolnshire’s place at the heart of the UK’s green industrial revolution, an area already renowned for its fuels productions ad offshore wind industry.

“For such a high profile project to choose North East Lincolnshire just shows how competitive we are for the investment market, and with projects like this chasing our patch just shows how we can work with the private sector to make location here an easy choice.”

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