Stobart to construct £110m CHP biomass plant in Widnes, UK

20 November 2014 (Last Updated November 20th, 2014 18:30)

Stobart Group has secured £110m in funding for the development of 20MWe, 7.8MWth combined heat and power biomass plant at Widnes, UK.

Stobart Group has secured £110m in funding for the development of 20MWe, 7.8MWth combined heat and power biomass plant at Widnes, UK.

Funding is being received from the UK Green Investment Bank (GIB) and GCP Infrastructure Investors, as well as other investors.

The CHP plant will be owned by Mersey Bioenergy (MBL). Stobart Infrastructure will investment £7.5m for a 40% stake in MBL, GIB will own 49% and Burmeister & Wain Scandinavian Contractor will hold an 11% stake.

Danish firm Burmeister & Wain is the engineering, procurement and construction contractor of the plant, which is expected to start operations in December 2016.

"This CHP Plant will generate a strong return on investment in the plant’s equity, as well as providing the group with a 16-year biomass fuel supply contract, a long-term wood drying income stream and valuable engineering revenue on the development."

MBL will build the on a four-acre site, which is part of Stobart Infrastructure’s logistics hub in Widnes.

The plant is expected to become the largest waste wood renewable energy plant in north-west England

Stobart Energy will supply 146,000t of recycled waste wood to the CHP Plant over 16 years.

The power generated at the facility will be exported to the national grid while the heat will be used by Stobart for its adjacent wood drying facility.

To be built by Stobart Rail, the facility will dry 140,000t of virgin wood material annually and produce 90,000t.

Stobart Energy & Infrastructure CEO Richard Butcher said: "This agreement secures an attractive energy investment for the Group and will contribute 24% of the growth we need to achieve our target of supplying two million tonnes of fuel per annum into the UK biomass market by 2017/18 from one million tonnes per annum at present.

"This CHP Plant will generate a strong return on investment in the plant’s equity, as well as providing the group with a 16-year biomass fuel supply contract, a long-term wood drying income stream and valuable engineering revenue on the development."