Teeside set to host world's largest gasification facility
Air Products will build and operate a 50MW advanced gasification plant making it the most powerful energy-from-waste facility of its type in the world, the company claims.
The Tees Valley plant will be located at the New Energy & Technology Business Park near Billingham and will divert up to 350,000 metric tonnes of residual waste from landfill per annum, generating enough electricity to power up to 50,000 homes.
AlterNRG is providing the Westinghouse advanced gasification technology which has the potential to generate a wider range of useful products, including heat, hydrogen, chemicals and fuels.
Longer term, the potential generation of renewable hydrogen could be deployed for commercial use, such as fuelling public transport.
Air Products has longstanding expertise in building and operating large-scale industrial gas and energy-related projects, but is a relative newcomer to the UK waste market.
According to its CEO John McGlade, the company's investment in waste-to-energy technology is a "natural extension" of its on-site business model. "It allows us to further extend our leading position in the global energy market," he added.
Air Products has secured the necessary environmental and planning approvals and the renewable energy facility is scheduled to enter commercial operation in 2014. Work has already begun to prepare the site. Full-scale construction activities will begin ramping up in the coming weeks.
The facility has already received a ringing endorsement from UK Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, who said such technology had a key role to play in meeting the UK's renewable energy targets.
Yesterday Clegg underlined the country's commitment to renewables in a speech during a UK trade & Investment energy summit.