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North West Evening Mail: Biomass Plans Gather Steam


ALL the major components of a new biomass power plant at a Workington paper mill are now in place.


Iggesund Paperboard in Siddick reached a milestone in its project last month with the arrival of a 250-tonne steam turbine.


The Italian-made turbine arrived at the Port of Workington and was later carried by road to the plant.


It will sit alongside the UK-made generator in the bio-power combined heat and power plant and will be able to produce about 50MW of electrical power.


The boiler building and turbine house are now almost fully clad. This follows the arrival of the 246ft main chimney of the plant in July.


There is still a lot of construction and engineering work to do inside before the plant becomes fully operational in the spring. A hydro-test has been completed on the new boiler.


Commissioning tests will continue throughout the coming months as stages of construction are completed.


Once steam tests begin there will be times when significant amounts of clean, high pressure steam are released from the boiler building.


A spokesman said the company would notify people in advance.


He added: “Silencers will be fitted to reduce the noise levels since these tests can be very loud and they will be scheduled to occur during the day.”


The biomass combined heat and power plant is part of a £108m investment to eliminate all fossil carbon emissions from the company’s mill at Workington.


The proposed development will be located at the site of the former board machine, which is no longer in use.


The plant will supply all the mill’s energy needs, both as electricity and as thermal energy in the form of steam.


It will produce an estimated 325GWh of electricity and 420GWh of thermal energy annually.


It will burn only clean biomass and will have a 131ft boiler house, steam turbine, cooling tower, control building, fuel preparation area, conveyors and storage.


Iggesund has also been trying to keep people in the community informed of developments at the site.


Iggesund has invested almost £100m in developing paperboard production in the last decade.


The mill produces 200,000 tonnes a year of the folding box board Incada and employs almost 400 people.


In 2010, the company invested £3.6m in rebuilding the refiners in the pulp mill. That reduced the mill’s electricity consumption by 13 per cent.


In July, representatives from the paper mill went to a Seaton Parish Council meeting to answer questions from the parish councillors.


Iggesund is owned by Swedish company Holmen which manufactures printing paper, paperboard and sawn timber and runs forestry and energy production operations.