National Grid Gas Distribution has this week signed a deal to invest £6.3m in a new bio-substitute natural gas (BioSNG) plant in Swindon that promises to slash greenhouse gas emissions from both haulage fleets and homes.
The company said the deal means the plant, which will turn 10,000 tons a year of household waste into BioSNG, has now secured £25m of project financing allowing construction to begin.
The plant, which is being developed by Advanced Plasma Power, also secured backing from the Department for Transport’s Advanced Biofuel Competition, the Network Innovation Competition run by energy regulator Ofgem, Wales & West Utilities, and Progressive Energy.
The plant is initially expected to provide enough green gas to fuel a fleet of 40 trucks belonging to local logistics firm Howard Tenens. The switch to BioSNG is expected to result in carbon emissions savings for the fleet of around 80 per cent.
In addition, the plant is expected to supply green gas to homes from the first half of 2018.
When fully operational the plant will be able to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 5000 tonnes a year, National Grid said, adding that bioSNG technology has the potential to provide up to 100TWh of green gas a year – enough to fuel all of Britain’s heavy good vehicles or meet one third of its domestic heating demand without requiring any changes to domestic heating or cooking appliances.
“Developing green technologies such as BioSNG means our customers can keep on using our network and their existing household appliances for affordable energy which will also be more sustainable and eco-friendly,” said National Grid Gas Distribution Chief Executive Chris Train. “Green gas fuelled vehicles also cause much less pollution than diesel and are particularly suitable for inner cities… As a long established player in the gas industry we’re delighted to be at the forefront of this exciting new frontier in the sector.”
The news comes just days after green energy specialist Ecotricity published a report arguing that green gas made from grass could meet 97 per cent of domestic gas demand by 2035.