The £74 million Speyside biomass power station in Moray, Scotland has been guaranteed £48 million of finance by the UK government. International infrastructure investor John Laing and the Green Investment Bank are to invest the remaining £26 million. Mott MacDonald is lenders’ technical advisor for the project.
The new woodchip combined heat and power plant will supply 87.4GWh of renewable electricity per annum to the national grid. It will be fuelled with sustainable forestry by-product sourced from the local area, one of the UK’s most productive forestry regions. The plant will also generate 76.8GWh of renewable heat per annum for the adjacent Macallan whisky distillery, providing approximately 90% of the steam needed in the distillation process. Using biomass instead of natural gas to generate heat will allow the distillery to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by over 17,500 tCO2e, comparable to taking nearly 8,000 cars off the road.
In its role as lenders’ technical advisor, Mott MacDonald completed a technical and environmental review on behalf of Infrastructure UK and will monitor construction until the project is completed in 2016.
Mott MacDonald’s project director Nick Escott said: “We have scrutinised all technical, environmental and commercial aspects of this project and are delighted that our advice has led to the project becoming a reality. Mott MacDonald has vast knowledge and experience in guiding, advising and supporting these types of projects and we will continue to provide our support until the project is operational.”