We are delighted to announce that progress is ramping up at our Middlesbrough site after switching our engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor at the end of last year.
We replaced EPC contractor NPT with Ireland-based Buttimer Engineering, and we’re now expecting waste to arrive on site and the plant to start processing from May.
Ian Jones, CEO, said: “Working with Buttimer has been a breath of fresh air. We turned a corner at Christmas and are now making very good progress.”
Changing EPC contractor was a highly complex process for our Middlesbrough-based facility, Jones explained: “When it became clear that NPT wasn’t going to be able to complete the installation to our required specifications, we had to move fairly rapidly.”
Cold commissioning is expected to begin on site in April, testing the individual parts of line one – the first of three lines at the plant. Performance tests will follow in May, when the first consignment of waste is expected to arrive, after which work will progress.
Buttimer Engineering has also installed line two, and work on line three is being carried out now.
There is also progress on a second site for pellet production, details of which will be revealed once exclusivity agreements are signed. The new facility would have a similar capacity to Middlesbrough, which is expected to produce up to 240,000 tonnes a year once operational.
We recently produced a significant batch of pellets, which were distributed to approximately 50 clients around the world including large cement kilns, power plants and steel mills.
We also recently revealed updated certification of our feedstock pellets, which has been carried out by UKAS accredited laboratory SGS.
According to the certification, the pellets have a calorific value of between 18.91MJ/kg to 21.73MJ/kg, with the lower end being for net value “as received” and the higher level for the “dry basis” gross value.
Jones said: “We’ve used raw material from our contracted suppliers, and with the improved technology at our plant when compared with the test rig, we’re expecting to have an even better spec for the final product.
“The nature of the raw material varies throughout the year, but we’ll be keeping the CV value above 20 for the final pellets. Feedback from offtakers has so far been positive.”
There have also been some changes behind the scenes, with Christine Wilson joining as Commercial Manager.
Jones said: “Demand for alternative fuels is increasing as businesses around the world come under increasing pressure and legislation to switch to renewable alternatives. I’m delighted that Christine has joined the team to help meet this demand with our SIRF pellets.”