Posted: 16 January, 2012. Written by David Collins
Wiltshire-based company Malaby Biogas has become the first recipient of a loan from a £10m anaerobic digestion fund launched in July last year by Defra and administered by WRAP.
The one-off £800,000 loan will be added to other funding secured by Malaby Biogas, including support from Clydesdale Bank, to construct and commission a new anaerobic digestion plant on the site of a redundant 12-acre smallholding.
Construction of the new £5m plant, located at Bore Hill Farm to the south of Warminster, Wiltshire, is already under way and Malaby, and its technology provider Marches Biogas, hope that commissioning will begin in March.
“Feedstock for the plant will be non-packaged food waste supplied by a new commercial collection operator with additional material potentially coming from other commercial and industrial food waste providers within the local area,” explained Malaby director Thomas Minter.
“Initially the plant will process around 17,000 tonnes of waste a year and we’d hope to be able to handle up to 20,000 tonnes at full capacity.”
The plant is expected to generate 4.3 million kilowatt hours of electricity a year, the equivalent required to power 1,000 homes. Around seven per cent of this is likely to be used to power the AD plant itself, and any excess that is generated will be sold on to National Grid.
“Malaby is the first of what we hope will be a number of companies to benefit from the anaerobic digestion loan fund and it is excellent to see such good progress being made at the Wiltshire plant,” said WRAP director Steve Creed.
“We’re currently considering a number of other applications, and the new round of loan awards for 2012 has just begun, so we’d encourage anyone who is interested in the fund to get in touch with us.”
Defra Minister Lord Taylor said: “The energy that can be created from food waste that would otherwise lie rotting in landfill is astonishing. This £800,000 investment from our £10 million anaerobic digestion fund will help this new plant to be built so we can harness that energy to power our towns and cities and remove a cause of greenhouse gas emissions form landfill.”
Richard Nuttall, Business Partner - Natural Resources, Clydesdale Bank said: "Clydesdale Bank is delighted to support Malaby Gas Ltd in the development of this venture which we believe to be an excellent project. We have also been pleased to work alongside WRAP on the provision of this finance for Malaby Biogas Ltd."
A maximum of £10m is available, through individual loans ranging from £50,000 - £1m, over a five-year period.
Applications for the current round can be submitted before 30th April.
More information on the fund can be found here.