Amer Power Plant is going green at a rapid pace

Top Quote Sustainable biomass is replacing coal on a large scale. Once again a significant reduction in CO2 emissions. Co-firing biomass (wood pellets) is the most economical form of sustainable energy production. End Quote
  • (1888PressRelease) September 27, 2010 - Essent is preparing the Amer Power Plant in Geertruidenberg to enable it to co-fire even more sustainable biomass. Technical modifications are required to be able to co-fire 50% biomass in unit 9 by 2015 at the latest. At that percentage, the Amer Power Plant will supply sustainable energy to three quarters of a million households. At the moment, the Amer Power Plant is already Europe's leader in the field of biomass co-firing (33%) for the production of sustainable energy.

    Significant reduction in CO2 emissions
    The total amount of biomass in the form of wood pellets that will be used following the modifications at the Amer Power Plant will have increased by around 40 percent by 2015 at the latest. This will result in a reduction in CO2 emissions of approximately 30%. Peter Terium, Essent CEO: "This is a clear and concrete step towards achieving our objectives; a 50% reduction in CO2 emissions between 2020 and 2030 and operating CO2 neutrally by 2050."

    Good forest management for sustainable energy
    The production of biomass from wood is a continuous process of growing, felling and replanting. On balance, no forests will then be lost. Furthermore, the forest areas are especially laid out for the production of wood and are operated sustainably.

    To be able to provide all households in the Netherlands with 100% green energy based on biomass co-firing (assuming 7 million households), every year approximately 12 million tonnes of biomass is required in the form of wood pellets. One family uses on average 3,500 kWh, which corresponds with approximately 1.8 tonnes of wood pellets. To get an idea; that is approximately 3 m3 of wood each year. Depending on the type of tree, this works out at 3 to 4 medium-sized trees per family per year.

    Good forest management is of considerable importance. Essent mainly obtains its wood pellets from North America, where, because of the favourable climate and the method of forest management, the speed of growth of coniferous trees is 12 to 25 m3/ha/year. In Europe, the speed of growth of trees is, on average, quite a bit lower at around 7 m3/ha/year. Under European conditions, a forest the size of South Holland would be sufficient to permanently provide 100% green energy to all Dutch households.

    Sustainable energy with biomass is the most economical
    Of all the current methods of producing green energy, the co-firing of biomass (wood pellets) is one of the most economical and most manageable methods and this will continue to be the case after 2020. This is cheaper than wind energy on land, much cheaper than wind energy at sea and many times cheaper than solar/photovoltaic energy. Peter Terium: "A suitable government policy is required to make the sustainable energy ambitions possible. Large-scale co-firing of biomass contributes significantly to that. A contribution that is quite simply necessary to be able to achieve the 2020 climate objectives."

    Technical modifications to the Amer Power Plant
    To be able to achieve the objectives, the Amer Power Plant has to undergo technical modifications. That means that several millions of Euros will be invested in:

    * an additional unloading installation at the existing harbour quay to be able to unload increased amounts of biomass

    * closed conveyor belts to convey the biomass to various sites at the power plant

    * additional mills and biomass silos

    Essent has started the permits procedure with the Province of North Brabant. These permits are required for the construction and the operational aspects of this new biomass project. Expectations are that modifications can start in 2011. Depending on the government policy, the additional capacity for the co-firing of biomass will be fully operational by 2015 at the latest.

  • FB Icon Twitter Icon In-Icon
Contact Information