Deal Gives Major Boost to Sustainable Scotland & Local Industries

Brockwell Energy (Brockwell) have announced that financial close has been reached on their Earls Gate Energy Centre (EGEC), an energy from Waste (EfW) facility in Grangemouth, Scotland.

The project was launched by Edinburgh-based company Brockwell Energy, who have funded and led the development of the project over the past three years working with a highly experienced team from the Green Investment Group (GIG).

On financial close Brockwell will retain 50% of EGEC while GIG together with its co- investor Covanta Energy will acquire the other 50% of EGEC though a jointly owned vehicle.

EGEC is a 21.5 MWe EfW facility that will not only prevent 216,000 tonnes of household and commercial waste going to landfill each year, but also provide low-carbon heat and power to four local industries, including chemical manufacturer and site utility service provider CalaChem, supplying CalaChem and other occupiers on the adjacent Earls Gate Park.

Brockwell CEO Alex Lambie said: “The success of EGEC reflects the skills and dedication of the Brockwell and GIG teams and delivers a new world-class renewable CHP facility to support the site. This is the first of a number of EfW projects that we will build over the next three years.”

As one of the most efficient plants in the UK, EGEC has unparalleled environmental credentials. Brockwell’s preferred technology provider, Constructions Industrielles de le Mediterranee (CNIM), will provide a stable, reliable technology solution which is well placed to adjust to changes in the mix of waste over the next 25 years.

Construction is due to commence in January 2019 and the plant is anticipated to become operational in November 2021, creating up to 500 jobs during construction and 30 long-term jobs in the operational phase.

Mr Lambie added: “The use of heat and power on-site will future-proof full-time local jobs. It will also create roles during construction, including a range of professional, skilled and entry-level positions and apprenticeships.”

In addition, Brockwell aims to deliver local community benefits focused on employment and training, support for local businesses and education programmes.

“We recognised the potential in Earls Gate from the outset,” said Brockwell CFO Iain Cockburn. “The delivery of such a flagship project for Scotland more than justifies the significant financial investment we have made over the past three years and demonstrates that it is possible to build and finance high quality merchant energy recovery plants without the need for subsidies.

“We are also very grateful for the commitment of the CalaChem team in supporting a highly demanding development programme and to our banking group of ABN Amro, NatWest Bank Plc, MUFG and Investec Bank Plc for their support.

Having successfully delivered the Earls Gate project, Brockwell’s attention will move to delivering their EfW project at Westfield in Fife – another important Scottish asset designed to deal with capacity shortfall.

Edward Northam, Head of GIG Europe, commented: “2017 saw Scotland recycle more waste than it sent to landfill. This is a fantastic achievement but there remains a lack of capacity to unlock the value to businesses and households from converting residual waste into low-carbon energy. The Earls Gate facility will play a major role in changing that.

“GIG is very proud of its Scottish roots and base in Edinburgh. Earls Gate is our nineteenth investment in Scotland and we’re delighted it will further support the decarbonisation of the Scottish economy.”

Neil Partlett, CEO of CalaChem, said: “CalaChem has been a part of Grangemouth industry for almost 100 years. In addition to improved environmental performance and operational reliability, Earls Gate Energy Centre will enhance CalaChem’s international competitiveness by controlling overall energy costs.

“This will help secure jobs, meaning CalaChem remains a valuable economic asset to the region.”

How It Works

The combined heat and power plant will use 216,000 tonnes of mixed household, commercial and industrial waste that would otherwise enter landfills every year.

This waste will be converted into 21.5 MWh of green electricity and heat in the form of steam – a direct source of reliable, green, low-cost energy for local businesses.

The project will use tried and tested moving grate technology from CNIM, one of the world’s leading providers of EfW plants.

Key Facts

Planning for Earls Gate was granted in January 2017 to replace a gas-fired plant.

Construction is due to commence in January 2019 and the plant is anticipated to become operational in November 2021, creating up to 500 jobs during construction and 30 long-term jobs in the operational phase.

The heat and power generated will make it one of the most efficient EfW plants in the UK.

A strategic asset for Scotland, the facility is integral to the Scottish Government’s ambitions to deliver a zero waste, circular economy that encourages waste reduction, boosts recycling and recovers vital renewable energy from what waste remains.

The project will (subject to the reinstatement of the Capacity Market) enter into a 15-year UK Capacity Market Contract (CMC), providing greater security of supply to the UK’s electricity generation capacity – one of the goals of The Energy Act 2013.

Myth Busters

“Scotland has too many incinerators”
Although there are a number of EfW plants consented in Scotland, very few of these are expected to be built.

“This isn’t an efficient system”
The technology used in EfW plants sees pre-treated, non-recyclable waste burned at high temperatures under carefully controlled conditions. The process is extremely efficient, robust and safe – with emissions meeting strict standards set by the European Union’s current Waste Incineration Directive. EfW plants are not the same as old incinerators that burned waste only to reduce volume of waste for landfill.

“This is the wrong location”
There is an alarming lack of alternative disposal points for municipal, commercial and industrial waste in the Central Belt of Scotland. Moreover, the Earls Gate Park offers excellent accessibility, with proposals that will see a minimal impact on traffic.

“It won’t make a difference”
By preventing volumes of waste equivalent to approximately 20% of Scotland’s total annual household waste to landfill, the facility will make a huge contribution to the local authority’s ability to achieve the goals of Scotland’s biodegradable municipal waste landfill ban, due on January 1, 2021.

18 December 2018