Enovos and NPG energy inaugurate biogas plant at Antwerp Port

NPG energy, a subsidiary of Enovos Luxembourg, has inaugurated its NPG BIO II biogas plant, at the Deurganckdok at Antwerp Port. The open is the first of three to come over the next year, the company said.
Enovos and NPG energy inaugurate biogas plant at Antwerp Port

Enovos said its hope is that through such facilities NPG energy will provide a response to the risk of energy shortages and increase the sustainability of energy production in Belgium.

According to André Jurres, CEO and co-founder of NPG energy, "The plant is primarily fuelled by liquids, coming from waste and residual flows from the food industry. After a preliminary treatment, the products are fed into the fermenters,  where they then undergo a heavily controlled fermentation process. The biogas produced during this process is then converted into electricity and heat using co-generation engines".

The plant has a total power of 3 MW and will produce 21 GWh, which corresponds to the energy use of around 6,000 households. The vast portion of the energy produced will be used by the neighbouring company Antwerp Gateway; with the remainder being directly injected into the grid. The residual heat will be used for prior and subsequent treatment of flows and will allow for the plant's installations to be operated.

With the operation of three biogas plants over the coming twelve months, NPG energy is bucking the dominant trend in Belgium. The situation for producers of sustainable energy has become much less profitable than before 2013.

Until 1 January 2013, producers of biogas received green electricity-production certificates upon operation of the plant. However, since this date, subsidies have been drastically reduced and limited to a ten-year period. An extension of five years is possible upon application following this period, but without any guarantee.

"Bio-methane plants play a key role in the fleet of energy production plants on the basis of renewable energies. With their continuous production, they contribute towards balancing production using from intermittent plants such as wind farms and photovoltaic production and are, therefore, able to guarantee the stability of energy supply for the grid", said Daniel Christnach, member of the Board of Directors at NPG energy and Head of Renewable Energies & Cogeneration with Enovos.

"These sustainable plants will provide a potential remedy to a shorting in production in Belgium and thereby provide an impetus to growth in industry in general," he continued. "Eventually, the biogas sector will not only be able to replace a large gas power plant of 400 MW, but also play a key role in other sectors such as transportation by transforming gas into CNG (compressed natural gas) for vehicles. However, the sustainable energy sector is also responsible for job creation."

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Enovos International S.A.

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