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Renewable energy breakthrough for DESSO®: Desso, Eneco and Host intend to explore joint biogas venture

09 December 2010

Leading European carpet manufacturer Desso has signed an agreement, together with Eneco and HoSt, confirming their participation in the joint exploration of whether biomass methanisation in Waalwijk could allow Desso to operate manufacturing on renewable energy.

Sustainable energy supplier Eneco have expressed their intention to explore whether a new plant, to be named Wabico, could deliver mutual gains for all parties involved. The plant is an initiative of, Eneco, HoSt and municipality Waalwijk. Desso’s production in Waalwijk is located close to Wabico, and given that the company uses annually 28,000 GJ of heat in Waalwijk and 200.000 GJ (electricity is usually expressed in kWh or GWh) electricity worldwide, they are an ideal candidate for such a venture.

Responsible use of renewable energy
While electricity can be easily transported via the grid, utilizing heat is more challenging.  It requires a nearby outlet and low-temperature applications. Desso’s production in Waalwijk, being so closely situated to Wabico, is an ideal location to explore whether this heat can be supplied to Desso.
How it works

The methanisation plant produces biogas from organic waste like verge grass, fat, oil and grease from hospitality. This gas is then fired into a combined-heat-power installation (CHP) which allows for optimum use of the caloric value of biogas. The CHP plant produces about 45,000 GJ per annum of electricity and nearly the same amount of heat. The biomass residue can be reused as compost or organic fertilizer – guaranteeing recovery of nutrients according to the Cradle to Cradle® principle. 

Working together for mutual gain
Energy supplier Eneco is aiming for 100% renewable energy production by 2030, as supported by their slogan ‘sustainable, decentral, together’ (“duurzaam, decentraal, samen”). Their business unit Solar, Hydro & Bio is in the lead for realizing a big part of this ambition within the Netherlands, Belgium, France Germany and the UK. Manager Tim Barenbrug looks forward to the Wabico project:.”Eneco sees Wabico in Waalwijk as a great development. We’ve already been producing sun- and wind energy for years. If we can add the bio CHP plant, we’ll be making a huge, sustainable step forward”.

Desso, since 2008 a Cradle to Cradle® company, seeks to meet high standards for raw material procurement, product design and recycling.  This principle, however, also demands the use of current solar income (renewable energy). Desso has already achieved Silver Certification for their EcoBase® carpet tile.  Following their ambition to become a fully Cradle to Cradle® company by 2020, Desso aims to use only renewable energy in all of its processes, ideally generated and used at source.  

HoSt is a leading designer- and supplier of turn-key biomass energy installations throughout the Netherlands, with 40% market share. Since 2004, HoSt has delivered 30 biomass energy installations within the Netherlands, and since 2008 they operate internationally. Aside from designing and building biomass energy installations, HoSt is also an engineering expert in the field of energy challenges within the industry.

Municipality of Waalwijk is the driver behind Ecopark Waalwijk, where Wabico will be located.  Ecopark Waalwijk, formerly a landfill site, is a unique location for the production of renewable energy from the sun, wind and biogas.  The land hosts 4,200 solarpanels, five windmills and exploited landfill gas. A decrease in landfill gas created interest in biomass methanisation.

Stef Kranendijk, Chief Executive Officer at Desso, is looking forward to the joint cooperation: “This is an exciting development for Desso and is an important step towards achieving our goals for 2020.  Renewable energy is an extremely integral part of the Cradle to Cradle® principle that we are passionately committed to. With this partnership, we are happy to be working with the best partners in the field to create a better future for us all.”

About Eneco
Eneco applies an integrated distribution strategy and specialises in the production, transmission, trading, supply and metering of energy (electricity, gas and heat) and related products and services. Eneco is making a transition to becoming a sustainable energy company and will make substantial investments in the area of sustainable energy during the coming years. Eneco developes sustainable projects working on windpower, waterpower, sunpower, biomass and heat. In total the company serves approximately two million business and domestic customers. Eneco employs about 7,000 people (6.628 FTEs). The head office is located in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. For more information, see http://corporatenl.eneco.nl

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