InfrastructureStraw power planned

Published 28 April 2008

With more and more companies turning to biofuels as an alternative to fossil fuels, a debate has erupted over the food-energy trade-off involved; a Welsh company bypasses this debate by planning to generate energy from straw

Welsh renewable energy company Eco2 is planning a 40 MW straw-fired biomass plant on the grounds of a disused sugar beet factory in North Lincolnshire. Plans for the £80 million Brigg Renewable Energy Plant are currently on show as part of a public consultation which will inform the final design before planning permission is sought. The power plant will be fuelled by 240,000 tons of straw annually, sourced from wheat production residue in the local area. Ash from the plant will be recycled as fertilizer. Eco2 estimates the plant could contribute £6 million to the local economy, creating 30 jobs in plant operation, and a further 50 in fuel supply. The company filed an application for a similar 40 MW straw-fired generation plant at Sleaford in Lincolnshire last year.