Posts Tagged ‘UK’
Harper Adams University College is expanding its commitment to sustainable energy with work due to start this week on a £3million-plus renewable power system at its Shropshire campus.
The anaerobic digester at Harper Adams in Edgmond, near Newport has been in planning for two-and-a-half-years and the turf cutting ceremony today brings together all the major partners including BiogenGreenfinch, which is designing the plant, energy company E.ON, and local contractor Adonis Construction.
The plant is expected to be generating heat and power from farm and food waste by the end of March 2011 and is anticipated to offset campus carbon emissions more than three times over. It will also create jobs and everyone from farmers to primary school pupils will be able to find out more about renewable energy technology from the site.
Harper Adams is just one of three higher education institutions in England to have won a share of £10 million set aside for “transformational” projects under the Revolving Green Fund- which was set up by the Higher Education Funding Council for England and Salix Finance.
Principal of Harper Adams, David Llewellyn, said: “We are incredibly pleased that Harper Adams has been able to use this funding to make its AD plans a reality and we are excited to be here with partners today to finally start work on the site.
“Food and farm waste can be digested in the AD unit and recycled into three useful by-products instead of being left to degrade in landfill or elsewhere, leaking methane into the atmosphere. Biogas will fuel a unit producing both heat and power meaning we will be sheltered from fluctuating energy prices for at least the next 10 years and will make a significant contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions for our campus.”
Other products of the process are a liquid fertiliser and compost, which can be used for the University College’s farm and grounds operations, reducing reliance on manufactured fertilisers. This will, in effect, bring the Harper Adams food chain full circle.
Don Leiper, Managing Director of E.ON’s Energy Services business, said: “The way we create and use energy is changing and projects like this will help us develop new, sustainable energy solutions for the future.
“Smaller, community scale, renewable energy projects such as this have two benefits; they provide a secure, reliable and low carbon energy supply whilst also making use of a valuable waste resource that would otherwise be sent to landfill.”
The Harper Adams AD plant will demonstrate how farmers and other business people can diversify and use by-products of their existing work to generate power and an additional source of income.
John Ibbett, Chairman of BiogenGreenfinch said: “It was during my own student days at Harper Adams that I first caught the vision for the commercial potential of AD. Some 28 years later, it gives me enormous pride to now be part of the fulfilment of that vision on the very doorstep of the college.
More details about the scheme can be obtained from Estates and Facilities Manager, Paul Moran, who made the bid to the Revolving Green Fund. He said: “This facility will help to address the huge waste of food in our region, businesses’ who are interested can contact me on (01952) 815266.
The financial and eco-benefits of investing in anaerobic digestion (AD) technology to generate energy from food waste is something that all processors should be considering, said InSource Energy.
In the third part of our special edition on plant efficiency, FoodProductionDaily.com examines not only the benefits but also the feasibility of food processors tapping into AD as a way of cutting costs and boosting their green credentials.
Anaerobic Digestion (AD) is a biological process that happens naturally when bacteria breaks down organic matter such as food, in environments with little or no oxygen. It is a treatment that composts waste and produces a biogas that can be used to generate electricity and heat.
AD has been attracting huge attention and last year the UK Government made development of the technology a central part of its waste reduction strategy. But since then only a handful of subsidised projects have been realised.
However, last month Premier Foods, one of the UK’s largest food companies, announced that construction of a closed loop commercial-scale anaerobic digestion plant at its RF Brookes ready meals factory in Wales was under way.
The £5m-facility will convert food waste into energy to help power the factory, providing significant savings in waste disposal and energy bills and reducing carbon emissions by around 8,500 tonnes per year. The AD plant, which will be owned by Insource Energy, is scheduled for completion by the end of 2010 and is expected to be fully operational in early 2011.
The facility, which received a £0.5m subsidy from WRAP Crymu, will have the capacity to process around 10,000 tonnes of food waste a year, and is expected to generate 300 kW total energy. It will supply power for about six per cent of the food processor’s electrical consumption and around the same amount for its hot water usage, John Scott, InSource Energy managing director told FoodProductionDaily.com
This is believed to be the first example in Wales of a factory being partially powered by its own waste in this way and is one of only a handful of such closed loop facilities in the UK, he added.
Technology developers Aquafuel Research have come up with a new way to improve the economics of generating electricity from landfill gas, biogas and sewage gas.
The company based in Sittingbourne, Kent, has field tested a cheaper way to protect electricity-generating combustion engines from corrosive contaminants in the methane-rich gas arising from landfilled waste.
It says it can double the life of lubricating oil in engines running on landfill gas, resulting in less downtime and “substantial reductions in operational costs”.
Existing scrubbing technology can remove hydrogen sulphide – the contaminant that attacks engine lubricating oil – from landfill gas, but Aquafuel’s system cleans only the 5% of gas that enters the crankcase part of the engine.
This means shaving off potentially 30% of the running costs for operators compared to conventional scrubbing technology, the company claims.
Aquafuel is now running second-phase trials on the technology, but said it will be commercially available in the third quarter of 2009.
One of the makers of Marks & Spencers ready meals is to use its own food waste to power its factory in Newport, South Wales.
RF Brookes, part of Premier Foods plc, has
been awarded £500,000 by the Welsh Assembly government towards its own £5 million anaerobic digestion plant at its Rogerstone site.
The facility is expected to be in operation by the end of next year, turning the company’s waste material into biogas, which would be used to generate heat and electricity.
It is expected to produce about 10% of the factory’s power, reducing carbon emissions by about 8,500 tonnes a year.
With increasing pressure to find alternatives to the landfill disposal of waste, in a new development, one UK water company is using Advanced Anaerobic Digestion in its wastewater treatment process to generate biogas and is using this in an on-site CHP unit. Graham Neave reports on the project.
At a time of heightened concerns about waste, climate change and the need for cleaner energy, it is worth pointing out that not all the news is bad. Technologies are redressing the balance – and one of these is Advanced Anaerobic Digestion (AAD).
AAD will not turn muck into brass, or gold, but it does offer the potential to transform the sewage treatment process from a simple clean-up to one that recovers significant quantities of energy.
In the Northumbrian Water region, in the north-east of England, there are more than 400 (437 to be exact) sewage treatment works that all produce varying amounts of sludge. This material has to be removed from every works but, inevitably, it is difficult to handle and, to say the least, rather smelly.
To make this sludge stable to further degradation and (nearly) odour free, Northumbrian Water Ltd (NWL) has long employed anaerobic digestion techniques for about 10% of its total sludge.