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Veolia to operate Bee's biomass power plant at the Port of Ghent

Gas and electricity company Belgian Eco Energy (Bee) has announced that Veolia will be responsible for the operation of its Ghent, Belgium-based biomass-fired power plant when it comes online in 2019.

The plant, construction on which is due to begin in the first quarter of 2016, will produce 215MW of renewable electricity from woodchips, making it one of the largest in Europe. It will be operated by Veolia for 15 years after it is commissioned, with revenues of around €150 million.

Compared with a coal-fired power plant, Bee's 100% biomass project will avoid CO2 emissions equivalent to heating the homes of Ghent's 240,000 residents. The electricity generated will be sold to industrial concerns and fed into the grid.

'With Veolia, we are confident of having a world-renowned partner able to commit to a results guarantee because of the experience they have acquired with similar projects,' says Michael Corten, CEO of Bee.

The future biomass power plant at the Port of Ghent will help Belgium contribute to achieving the European Union's 2020 targets, in particular greenhouse gas emission reductions, as it will avoid the emission of 450,000 tonnes of CO2 each year compared with an equivalent natural gas-fired plant.

By providing 2% of Belgium's total electricity production, the plant will also contribute to increasing the share of renewable energy in the country's energy mix together with improving its energy efficiency by introducing the most efficient technology.