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£65m Barnsley EfW plant approved

Plans from Peel Environmental for a £65m energy-from-waste (EfW) facility at the site of a former colliery in south Yorkshire have been approved.

Barnsley Council’s planning board backed the proposal for the Houghton Main Renewable Energy Centre which will use biomass to generate up to 20MW of energy for export.

The company’s original proposals in June 2014 were for an £80m resource centre which included an anaerobic digestion facility, but has now been removed.

The current facility will accept up to 150,000 tonnes of fuel per year and use an advanced gasification process to generate enough energy to power around 49,000 homes.

Development manager at Peel Environmental, Jane Gaston said: “We’re pleased that the council has backed this renewable project that will help widen the energy mix and bring a significant economic boost into Barnsley.

“The facility will create around 200 full-time jobs during construction and 25 during operation, as well as opportunities for the supply chain.

“There is a real opportunity for the centre to act as a catalyst for further regeneration, as the site is surrounded by land earmarked for employment use. With the ability to provide a renewable and reliable source of energy, it could unlock even further inward investment to the area.”

Specialist developer Northern Bio Power will build and operate the facility.

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