The energy plant will convert 40,000 tonnes of waste wood into renewable heat and electricity each year, reducing CO2 emissions by around 16,500 tonnes a year.
The centre is the brainchild of MITIE’s Asset Management business, O-Gen UK and the Una Group. The companies have come together to form a new energy services company(ESCo),O-Gen Plymtrek, which is exploring opportunities to supply the energy from the plant to a local business.
In the construction phase 50 local jobs for contractors will be available. Once the plant is up and running next summer 23 local people will be employed to work there.
Mike Tivey, Managing Director of MITIE’s Asset Management business, said: “We are delighted to be developing this energy centre in Plymouth and creating jobs in the local community. We really appreciate the support we have received from Plymouth City Council in bringing this exciting new venture to Plymouth.
“Generating energy from waste material is an important part of the fast-growing decentralised energy market, which provides organisations and communities with secure, locally generated power and heat for the future.”
MITIE’s Asset Management business has helped develop and will maintain the energy centre during a ten year contract. The plant, which uses technology provided by O-Gen UK, will generate around 26,000MWh of electricity a year – enough to power 6200 homes or to make 866, 666 cups of tea. Waste wood, destined for landfill, will be converted to a gas fuel, which will be combusted in a boiler to create steam. This steam will drive a turbine to produce the energy and heat.
The South West Regional Development Agency (SWERDA) has given a grant of £525,000 to the new energy plant in recognition of the impact it will have on the local economy by creating jobs.
David Pike, Managing Director O-Gen UK, said “We are delighted to work with MITIE in the development and expansion of our timber resource recovery business. This plant represents the first of a series of combined heat and power plants currently under discussion with MITIE across the South West region.”
The UK produces 4.5 million tonnes of waste wood a year. It is estimated that recovering energy from just 2 million tonnes of waste wood would generate 2,600 GWh electricity and save 1.15m tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions.