NORTHERN IRELAND, UK - A new £23 million anaerobic digestion plant is to be built at Tully Quarry near Ballymena, Northern Ireland's economy and agriculture ministers have announced.
This follows a similar announcement earlier in the year, when a £9.3 million investment went towards a plant in County Donegal, over the border.
The poultry litter produced in Northern Ireland (currently some 270kt per annum and rising) presents a significant environmental challenge.
The Tully Centralised Anaerobic Digestion Plant, being led by Stream BioEnergy Ltd. and built by Xergi and local firm BSG Ltd, will use a new innovative nitrogen stripping technology to allow the plant to use up to 100 per cent poultry litter and will be one of the first Anaerobic Digestion plants in the world able to do so.
The plant will process 40,000 tonnes of Northern Ireland's poultry litter each year to produce biogas, generate 3MW of renewable electricity and produce a high quality organic fertiliser.
The total cost of the project is £23.3million, of which Invest Northern Ireland is providing a repayable £7.4million loan at a commercial based interest rate, and £1.3million equity under the Sustainable Utilisation of Poultry Litter (SUPL) Scheme.
The balance of project funding has been provided by a Foresight-managed fund Recycling and Waste LP, in which the UK Green Investment Bank is a cornerstone investor, as well as Xergi Limited.
Economy Minister Simon Hamilton said: “This project has been developed as a result of support under the SUPL SBRI Project and the SUPL Loan Scheme. It is an outstanding example of public sector and private investors coming together to support a new technology for sustainable agriculture and to grow our economy.
"In addition to helping the local poultry sector to grow, the plant will create up to 100 jobs during the construction phase with a further 11 new jobs available when the plant becomes operational in 2017.”
Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs Minister Michelle McIlveen said: “This project has seen close collaboration between technology companies, government and funding bodies, including the Green Investment Bank.
"It is a testament to our commitment to deliver a sustainable future for our agriculture sector. Projects such as this will play an important role in helping the poultry sector to address an environmental challenge.”ThePoultrySite News Desk