Aesica to benefit from investment in new £137m green energy plant

The initiative forms part of the company’s commitment to renewable energy and safeguarding the environment

The Aesica plant in Cramlington, UK, will benefit from the new biomass Combined Heat and Power plant to be constructed nearby

Aesica, a global pharmaceutical contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO), is involved in a renewable green initiative at its Cramlington site in Northumberland, UK.

UK Green Investment Bank (GIB) and John Laing Investments Limited (JLI) have committed £50m of equity to a new £137m renewable energy facility in North East England, developed by Estover Energy. The biomass Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant, which will be built in Cramlington, will generate 223GWh of renewable electricity annually. It is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by around 56kt of CO2 annually, the equivalent of taking 25,000 cars off the road during its lifetime.

Aesica Pharmaceuticals, with another pharmaceutical firm, will benefit directly from its output, alongside the National Grid. Green electricity will be routed to Aesica’s Cramlington site located in an adjacent industrial estate. The energy plant will also have the potential to provide 5MW of renewable heat to neighbouring facilities.

GIB is investing £23m in the project, with JLI providing £27m. Barclays will provide the remainder of the funding as debt, 60% of which will be guaranteed by the Danish export credit agency Eksport Kredit Fonden (EKF).

Burmeister & Wain Energy (BWE) and Burmeister & Wain Scandinavian Contractors (BWSC) will construct the power plant in a joint venture and BWSC will operate the plant upon completion.

Up to 250 jobs are expected to be created during the construction process, while 25 permanent positions will be maintained at the operational facility.

Fuel for the plant will be provided by Stobart Biomass Products, plus local growers and forest industry suppliers.

'Our company is committed to best environmental practice and indeed our Cramlington site complies in full with ISO 14001 and all appropriate environmental legislation,' said Ian Muir, Aesica's Managing Director. 'Consequently, we are always on the look-out for maximising the use of green, environmentally friendly energy.

'We are therefore delighted to receive our energy supply moving forwards from the biomass combined heat and power plant and to playing our role through this initiative in reducing greenhouse emissions.'

Ed Northam, Head of Investment Banking at the UK Green Investment Bank, added: 'The Cramlington plant promises to create local jobs, support an industry whose vitality is essential to the growth of the regional economy and help cut UK greenhouse gas emissions while promoting the country’s adoption of green energy sources.'

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