Locale : Global (English)
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Front view of the plant in the day


Biomass refers to living and recently dead biological material that can be used as fuel as gas, liquid or in its solid form.

Burning biomass can be a clean way of generating electricity.

Most commonly, biomass refers to plant matter, but it also includes plant or animal matter used for production of fibres, chemicals or heat. Biomass may also include biodegradable wastes that can be burnt as fuel. Production of biomass is becoming a competitive form of renewable energy.

Burning biomass can be a clean way of generating electricity and is often called ‘carbon neutral’, the carbon released into the atmosphere when the material is burnt is equivalent to the amount absorbed by the plant during its growth cycle.


In this sector, we have worked with the following biomass materials:

  • Clean wood
  • Treated wood
  • Straw
  • Rice husks
  • Bagasse
  • Chicken and turkey litter
  • Chicken feathers
  • Coffee beans waste
  • Food waste
  • Sewage sludge
  • Secondary recovered fuels


Mott MacDonald's experience ranges from market studies of biomass feedstock to due diligence and feasibility studies to technical support and guidance on the design and development of biomass plants. Our consultants are familiar with local planning and permitting issues to help our clients which include governments, regulators, investors, lenders, owners and suppliers.

Our capabilities include:

  • Acquisition due diligence (financial, contractual and technical aspects)
  • Candidate selection
  • Conceptual design and specification
  • Contract review including power purchase agreements, heat supply agreements, fuel supply agreements, carbon credits, operation and maintenance agreements, long-term service agreements
  • Data collection
  • Feasibility studies
  • Health and safety, environmental and social reviews
  • Fuel supply chain analysis
  • Market studies (feedstock and end use markets)
  • Planning and permitting
  • Preparation of minimum functional specification
  • Review of financial models and projected performance
  • Review of project interfaces and infrastructure
  • Site selection
  • Tender review and bid negotiations

Customer benefits

  • Use of clean cut wood
  • Use of biomass from food processing (eg. straw, coffee beans)

Savings/value added demonstrated

  • Additional revenue
  • Waste management

Selected project examples

  • UK
  • Belgium
  • Czech Republic
  • Hungary
  • Italy
  • South Africa
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