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Weltec BioPower to showcase biogas technologies at Energy Now Expo Ireland

Published 27 September 2017

Weltec Biopower will be showcasing its biogas technologies at the upcoming Energy Now Expo Ireland to be held in October.

In the course of 2017, Ireland intends to initiate the energy reform with a new feed-in tariff for renewable energies. The government plans to increase the amount of green electricity from the current figure of about 23 percent to 40 percent by 2020.

The tariff system is to establish a favourable environment for biogas plant operation. In view of the extensive agricultural and waste resource potential available in Ireland, Weltec Biopower (UK) Ltd will showcase its AD plant technologies at the Energy Now Expo Ireland, which will be held in the end of October in The Hub in Kilkenny.

In early September, the Irish Department of Communications, Climate Action & Environment (DCCAE) announced the adoption of a new subsidy regime to promote renewable energies, to be known as the Renewable Energy Support Scheme (RESS). So far, Ireland has been the only European country without an incentive scheme for heat from renewable sources. However, the green island has to meet EU requirements by 2020. This means that 16 percent of Ireland‘s total energy needs for power, heat and traffic must be provided from renewable energies. This is to be achieved by making use of all green energy sources available in the country. Biogas is to play a key role especially in meeting the individual goals for the heat and transport sector.

The conditions for expanding the network of biogas plants in Irelands are very good: Firstly, the agriculture and waste sector boasts an enormous biomass potential. Secondly, with a growth rate of 4.9 percent in 2016, Ireland is the fastest-growing national economy in the EU and offers a favourable investment climate. Moreover, the country wants to gain independence from energy imports. However, in order to successfully initiate the energy reform, there is a special need for biogas plant manufacturers who have long-standing plant engineering experience in the region.

More than 10 years ago, Weltec Biopower and its expertise were instrumental in establishing the biogas industry in
the UK. Through the individual plant design and tried and tested components for various substrates and biomethane processing, the plant manufacturer has already established almost 20 biogas plants in the UK. Eight of these plants are located in Northern Ireland, where Weltec is currently building two AD plants that will be finished soon.

In Newtonabbey, an hour‘s drive from Belfast, a 500-kW plant is being built for a pig fattening farm. Up to 70 percent of the feedstock is pig slurry. The rest will consist half of grass silage and half of maize silage. In order to make efficient use of the high energy potential of grass silage, the operator has opted for the MULTIMix system. This Weltec input system is positioned between the dosing feeder and the digester. Before the substrate is loaded into the digester, the fibrous material is shredded and mixed with pig slurry.

The second 500-kW biogas plant in Benburb near Armagh, close the Irish border, will also go live in the coming winter. It is being built at an old industrial site. The feedstock mix mainly consists of cattle manure and grass silage as well as of maize silage and chicken manure. Apart from a digester, the pre-storage tank, the digestate storage tank and the dosing feeder, the plant in Benburb will therefore also make use of the MULTIMix system.

Source: Company Press Release