The Green Investment Bank (GIB) has invested £20m towards what is scheduled to be the largest renewable energy project in Northern Ireland.
The Evermore Renewable Energy project, which will cost £81m in total, is a 15.8MW wood-fuelled combined heat and power station (CHP) that will be built in Derry. The investment marks the first initiative that the GIB has supported financially in Northern Ireland.
The plant is due to be fully operational by 2015, and the electricity it creates will increase the renewable output in Northern Ireland by 10 percent. It is anticipated that the plant will produce enough electricity to power 25,000 homes, and will process 110,000 tonnes of wood each year.
Vince Cable – “Today’s investment will have a significant green impact, reducing carbon emissions and diverting wood from landfill. It is also good news for the local area, creating jobs and building a stronger economy”
The electricity will be supplied to the national grid, with the heat output to be used by an integrated wood drying facility that will be able to fuel biomass boilers throughout Northern Ireland.
Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), Vince Cable, has said that he hopes this will be the first of many GIB projects in Northern Ireland, adding: “Today’s investment will have a significant green impact, reducing carbon emissions and diverting wood from landfill. It is also good news for the local area, creating jobs and building a stronger economy.”
Chief executive of the UK GIB, Shaun Kingsbury, said: “Not only will the project save the same amount of carbon as taking 77,000 cars off the road, it will also make use of over two million tonnes of wood, a valuable energy resource that would have otherwise gone to landfill. Our mission is to crowd in private sector investment, so I’m especially pleased to see that every pound of GIB investment brought in more than £3 of private funding.”