Finland’s Finnvera join Teesside biomass plant project with £100m investment
Finland’s export credit agency Finnvera will contribute £100 million (€120m) to the funding of the planned Teesside biomass plant in the UK.
Finnvera is the second Finnish player pitching into the project, as the circulating fluidised bed boiler and the flue gas cleaning system are delivered by Amec Foster Wheeler Energia.
The construction of the world’s largest biomass plant is estimated to cost approximately £650 million and preliminary construction work for the MGT Teesside plant will begin within the next few months.
Commercial operations are due to start during the first quarter of 2020 at the 299MW power plant, which will be fuelled solely by clean wood pellets and chips.
“We’re glad of this opportunity to contribute to the export of Finnish renewable energy technology. Finland has solid expertise in this type of renewable energy technology. Elsewhere in the world – surprisingly – it is still often perceived as something new,” said Tuukka Andersén, VP and head of underwriting at Finnvera.
“Finnvera’s participation in the project enabled long-term financing of 15 years. This is a key factor if a project of this type is to succeed,” he added.
Jaakko Riiali, VP of commercial operations at Amec Foster Wheeler Energia, sees the project as a good bridgehead for large biomass boilers of the power company class in Central Europe.
“Finnvera’s inclusion in the financial arrangements gave stability to the negotiations and made it considerably easier to reach an agreement on project financing,” Riiali said.
In order to ensure the sustainability of fuel supply, the Teesside plant uses fuel acquired from FSC Forest Management certified forest areas, which guarantees that the fuel is derived from responsibly managed forests.
The price paid by the British government for electricity produced using clean biomass is considerably higher than the normal price of electricity.
The purpose is to support the attainment of the targets set by the UK government and the European Union for CO2 emissions and to promote the objective of reducing coal combustion at both small and large power generation units.