O-Gen energy plant first to receive double ROCs

Press release: 27 July 2011 - O-Gen UK, the timber resource recovery and recycling company, has become the first advanced conversion technology plant in the UK to receive double Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROCs) from OFGEM, the highest banding for this type of energy technology.

The announcement comes less than two months after the government announced in its Waste Review that it is considering banning waste wood from being sent to landfill, which has created a huge opportunity for companies such as O-Gen who provide an alternative stream for used wood products. 

O-Gen UK has developed a technology and commissioned a gasification plant in Stoke on Trent which uses advanced treatment techniques to turn waste timber, which would otherwise be disposed of via landfill, into clean renewable energy. Other renewable clean products such as charcoal and metals are also recovered.  The plant, which is the first of a number of Resource Recovery Centres to be located across the UK, is sited in an existing industrial area so as to make best use of its combined heat and power (CHP) capabilities and provides a local sustainable solution treating wood products.

Its process meets the highest environmental standards and efficiency benchmarks for a biomass plant and has been audited and assessed as using the ‘best available technique’ for the disposal of waste timber.  The technology aims to be zero waste as only renewable heat and electricity, charcoal product and recovered recycled materials are produced during the operation of the facility.

David Pike, managing director of O-Gen UK comments:  “The release of double ROCs by OFGEM represents recognition by regulators of the sustainability and advanced nature of our technology.  With two further timber resource recovery facilities already under construction and a number of planning permissions in hand, the issue of ROCs completes the circle and is a significant step forward in the development of our business.”

O-Gen UK and sister company O-Gen Acme Trek have received funding from Foresight Group, a specialist investor in environmental infrastructure, solar energy and private equity.

James Samworth from Foresight Group adds: “We had the foresight to invest in O-Gen’s innovative facility at a time when the business, and the sector it sits within, was in its infancy.  The company’s achievement of gaining double ROC status, coupled with the UK’s growing appetite for recycling and renewable energy, should ensure a positive future for the business and for investors.”

Ends

For further information about O-Gen UK and O-Gen Acme Trek, please contact:
Louise Farley, Foresight Group 01732 471 855.

Notes

According to a new (July 2011) report from the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP), there has been a significant increase in demand for waste wood to be used as fuel, with UK biomass facilities' demand for recovered wood more than doubling between 2007 and 2010 to reach 0.55 million tonnes, representing almost a quarter of total recovered wood demand. Wood waste is estimated to be responsible for around five per cent of UK landfill gas emissions. However, wood contains more lignin than food or green garden waste, so it degrades much more slowly, which means the biogas is released over a much longer period.