UK’s green bank backs anaerobic digestion plants

Two farm-based anaerobic digestion (AD) plants in Northern Ireland have secured funding. The Foresight Group’s Recycling and Waste (RAW) Fund, of which the UK Green Investment Bank (GIB) is a large contributor, has […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

Two farm-based anaerobic digestion (AD) plants in Northern Ireland have secured funding.

The Foresight Group’s Recycling and Waste (RAW) Fund, of which the UK Green Investment Bank (GIB) is a large contributor, has invested £8.7 million in the 3MW Ballymena plant.

Around £10.2 million is being sourced from other investors.

The plant will be fuelled exclusively by poultry litter.

RAW has also committed £1.8 million to Gorthill AD in Eglington, with another £1.8 million coming from other groups. The 0.5MW plant will use grass silage, poultry litter and cattle slurry as fuel.

Together, the two plants are expected to generate more than 20,000 MWh of electricity each year, enough to power 5,000 households.

Edward Northam, Head of Investment Banking, UK GIB said: “We expect to see more rural communities exploring anaerobic digestion as a way of diverting organic waste from landfill while becoming more self-sufficient.

“Plants of this scale save farming businesses money and can provide vital income through the sale of the electricity being generated.”