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30 million litre bioethanol facility unaffected by RDA cuts

Financial support for a 30 million litre bioethanol from waste facility is to be maintained despite the closure of the Regional Development Agency (RDA) which is providing a portion of the project’s investment.

INEOS Bio’s £52m Seal Sands, Teesside facility will use around 100,000 tonnes of biodegradable household and commercial waste to produce 3MW of electricity and 240,000 tonnes (30m litres) of carbon-neutral road transport fuel per year - enough to power 250,000 vehicles.

The project is being part funded by a £4.5m grant from DECC and an additional £2.8 grant from One North East – one of the regional development agency which is to close, in order to make way for the Government’s Local Enterprise Partnership scheme.

In a response to a House of Commons question, energy minister Greg Barker said: “Government are supporting development of this important demonstration project through grant funding. The scoping part of the project was successfully completed in 2010. DECC, together with One North East and technical experts at the National Non-Food Crops Centre (NNFCC) have been advising Ineos Bio as they work on issues concerning the construction stage of the project.”

An INEOS Bio spokesman told MRW: “The issues with the UK plant referred to in the Minister’s response relates to our concern about the breakup of RDAs in the UK (in particular One North East) and the possible impact this could have on the grant funding we have in place for the Seal Sands site.”
“The very positive response by the Government Minister confirms that the grant funding for this important demonstration project is not affected.”

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