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Green energy plant now fully operational

Posted 13 October 2011

The AD unit will process 15,000 tonnes of farm waste produced across Harper Adams operations along with an additional 8,000 tonnes of food waste sourced from commercial and municipal operations."

Paul Moran at the AD plant

Harper Adams University College is pleased to announce that its new green energy plant is now fully operational, supplying power to the Shropshire campus.

The anaerobic digestion unit on University College land in Edgmond, near Newport, has passed all necessary tests and been handed over by supplier BiogenGreenfinch.

It is now generating 495kw of electricity from a range of waste streams. Estates Manager Paul Moran explained: “The AD unit will process 15,000 tonnes of farm waste produced across Harper Adams operations along with an additional 8,000 tonnes of food waste sourced from commercial and municipal operations.

“The amount of food waste that is thrown away each year in the UK is staggering. Estimates start at 17 million tonnes and 40% ends up in landfill where it is responsible for half of the greenhouse gas emissions from waste. AD captures the gas and uses it to create renewable electricity, heat and biofertiliser. The biofertiliser from our AD plant will be used on the University College farm.

“By diverting waste from landfill, reducing our need to buy in electricity and gas for power and heating, and providing our own rich fertiliser, it is estimated that the AD plant will offset campus carbon emissions more than three times over.”

The plant, which has already been shortlisted for three national awards and which helped earn Mr Moran the title of The Energy Institute’s 2011 Energy Manager of the Year, was built in conjunction with AD specialists BiogenGreenfinch. Initial funding was supplied by the Higher Education Funding Council for England’s Revolving Green Fund, and project partner E.ON Energy. 

Richard Barker from BiogenGreenfinch said: “This state of the art plant will deliver three great outcomes: a platform to educate both students and the wider community about the benefits of anaerobic digestion, an additional commercial revenue stream for the University College and, finally, it will generate a significant amount of renewable energy from farm slurry and from food waste that would most likely go to landfill.”

Anyone interested in using the AD plant as an alternative to landfill or other waste disposal methods can visit www.haenergy.co.uk to find out more.

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