Veolia appointed operator of Sheffield’s new biomass power plant

The 6.5MWe biomass-fired combined heat and power station will be built in Holbrook, Sheffield, and is designed to provide sustainable green energy for over 10,000 homes. The project has been developed by UYE (UK) and is being constructed on behalf of Equitix ESI CHP (Sheff) Ltd. It will use around 55,000 tonnes of waste wood as carbon neutral fuel which will be provided from local suppliers and has the capability to export renewable heat energy to a district heating scheme.

Under the contract Veolia will have full responsibility for the 24/7 operation and maintenance, performance, emission monitoring, ash disposal and will manage the biomass fuel. Veolia will also provide technical support during the commissioning of the new plant that is due to start generating low carbon heat and power in Spring 2017.
Pat Gilroy, Veolia COO Industrial Customers UK, Country Director Ireland, said “This new contract is a further step in our commitment to deliver sustainable energy that both reduces carbon emissions, and recycles a resource that would be wasted. We are looking forward to working with our project partners to help deliver the UK renewable target.”

The plant is being developed on a brown-field site by Equitix, an infrastructural investment company, which has a dedicated £200m fund for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects including £100m from the Green Investment Bank (GIB). They have invested in a number of biomass type projects and this is their largest single investment to date.

The technology used for generating electricity is ‘Organic Rankine Cycle’ which has the same thermodynamic cycle as steam turbine systems, but uses ‘organic fluid’ vapour as the driving force for the turbine within a closed loop heating circuit. The biomass fuel will be burnt in two water-cooled WID compliant moving grate furnaces and emissions will be strictly controlled using the latest flue technologies.

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