£3m energy investment in Fylde

© WARREN SMITH 2011 SHOWS FARMGEN'S £3M ANAEROBIC DIGESTION PLANT AT WARTON LANCS WAS SWITCHED ON BY MP MARK MENZIES WITH OWNER SIMON RIGBY SEE COPY

MARK Menzies MP has officially opened a new, state-of-the-art £3m Anaerobic Digestion plant in Warton.

The revolutionary site was officially switched on May 21st and is expected to generate 800kW of electricity – the equivalent of powering more than 1,000 homes.

Simon Rigby, a Fylde resident and one of the founders of Farmgen, used the occasion to reveal that the company was now looking to have 10 AD plants up and running by 2015 – with sites earmarked across Britain’s rural communities.

He said: “We are extremely proud of what we have achieved at Carr Farm and the fact that our first plant is now up and running. It is a major milestone for us as we continue our growth plans as part of the revolution in green energy.

“We firmly believe Carr Farm points the way forward for future farm-based AD plants across the UK and for the regeneration of rural economies.”

Farmgen is currently building a second £4m plant near Silloth, due to go live at the end of the summer, and has submitted planning applications for two further operations in Cumbria.

Plans are also in place for similar sites across the north of England.

Mark Menzies MP said: “I am very proud to see local people investing in diverse energy technologies which are vital to our country’s energy security.

“We must use a range of energy sources to meet the UK’s demand long into the future.”

Marks & Spencer has signed a five-year, fixed price contract to buy the energy generated from the Warton plant as part of its Plan A commitment, its ethical and environmental programme, to procure more renewable electricity from small-scale energy sources.

Anaerobic digestion is a process which uses microorganisms to break down biodegradable material to produce “biogas” – mimicking the inner workings of a cow’s stomach – which in turn can be converted into electricity.

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