Plans for the UK’s largest renewable energy facility to use anaerobic digestion (AD) for power generation have been approved by North Yorkshire County Council.
Selby Renewable Energy Park is to be built on the site of a former Tate & Lyle factory and will use AD technology to generate 8MW of energy.
The £20 million plant will produce electricity from 165,000 tonnes of food waste every year – waste which would otherwise end up in landfill.
It is estimated that the facility will generate enough clean energy to power 10,800 homes a year, more than the entire population of Selby, which is close to the Drax power station.
Shaun Flynn, business development manager for the scheme, said that Selby Renewable Energy Park would also contribute towards industry-wide efforts to meet the government’s targets on renewable energy.
Highlighting the perceived benefits of AD, he stated: “Waste is treated in a sealed process reducing the generation of greenhouse gases and carbon emissions. ”
A clean, renewable fuel is produced which can be used to create electricity and heat and we are returning a green, sustainable fertiliser to the land which will in turn grow our crops for food.”
Last week, the government set a target for the power generation industry to produce 40 percent of UK electricity from low-carbon sources – such as renewables, nuclear and clean coal – by 2020.