Behind the project
Our biomass combined heat and power plant is one of about 20 similar size projects that are also being contracted or are already operating, across the UK. All of these generate clean, green electricity; safeguarding the environment and future generations.
Renewable Energy in the UK
Our project and other renewable energy providers such as wind and solar are all working towards achieving the UK Governments 2020 renewable energy targets, and ensuring that the UK can generate a significant amount of its electricity from renewable sources in the future.
For the most up to date information on renewable energy in the UK take a look at the Government’s statistics page www.gov.uk/government/ collections/renewables-statistics
Here at the Kent Renewable Energy Biomass CHP we are proud to be part of this renewable energy sector, generating power and looking after the environment for years to come.
Why is Biomass Renewable?
In common with other biomass materials wood based biomasses all capture energy and CO2 through the process of photosynthesis as they grow, and when burned as a fuel release only the same amount of CO2 they captured, back into the atmosphere.
Biomass is much better for the environment than coal and other fossil fuels as the carbon dioxide being released is not ‘new’. This can sound a bit complicated but simply means that the CO2 in the plant material being burned is already part of our balanced atmosphere as it was only relatively recently absorbed by those same plants and trees.
Fossil fuels however release CO2 which was absorbed thousands of years ago and so is not part of today’s atmosphere, dangerously adding to the CO2 levels which are part of the cause of global warming.
Furthermore, by managing woodlands and chipping noncommercial and low grade wood, this minimizes the natural decomposition of wood and the subsequent release of methane, a gas around 20 times more harmful to the environment than CO2.
How a Biomass Plant Works
How a Biomass Plant Works: The wood fuel is delivered to our plant from local managed woodlands. We carry a store of up to 20 days’ worth of fuel in a dedicated wood store. Wood fuel is then transported from the store to the boiler by conveyor where it is burned. The energy released is used to boil water; the steam produced then activates a steam turbine creating rotational energy from which electricity is generated by an electrical generator. The electricity is used by the tenants at Discovery Park with the rest fed in to the national grid for everyone to use, and the steam produced provides a source of renewable heat to Discovery Park as well.
Our Project Partners
We at Kent Renewable Energy Ltd. have brought together a wide range of experienced partners and renewable energy experts to develop and construct this project. These experts have significant experience in all aspects of project finance, project development, environmental management, civil engineering, power plant engineering and management..
- Investors – We are owned by Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners K/S (CIP), a Danish infrastructure fund which specialises in the development of and investment in, renewable energies.
- Power Plant Constructors – Our power plant was built by Danish company Burmeister Wain Scandinavian Contractor (BWSC), who also operate and maintain the plant.
- Support Team during Construction – Whilst we were constructing our power plant we used a support team which included Fichtner Consulting Engineers who assisted with engineering and Callidus Health and Safety as the Principal Designer in support of the UK CDM-2015 Health and Safety regulations.
- Fuel Suppliers – We use locally sourced wood fuel to generate heat and power from our biomass power plant. The South East of the UK used to be the home of several paper mills that provided a commercial market for local forestry, it also used to be the centre of home grown fencing materials in the UK. Much of that industry has now closed and we hope that by building our power plant here we have provided a new, significant and reliable local market for low grade wood that can otherwise be difficult to make use of. This is making woodland management in the area and across the south east more economic, helping local wood producers to diversify, bringing more woodland back into active management and so also supporting the production of higher quality wood and coppice. The wood fuel is sourced and delivered by Euroforest Ltd, a leading provider of harvesting and marketing services to the UK forestry industry, who are based in Hampshire.
- Power Plant Operators – Danish company Burmeister Wain Scandinavian Contractor (BWSC) have built our combined heat and power plant for us, and are operating and maintaining the plant now it is generating clean, green power.
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