Biomass plant for Foynes? Darragh McCullough
Struggling biomass producers could in be in line for a major boost after it was revealed that plans are at an advanced stage to establish a major briquetting plant in the southwest.
It is believed that CPL, a major British fuel distribution company, is close to lodging a planning application for a plant to process up to 300,000t a year of biomass into briquettes.
The plant would be located close to Foynes Port in Limerick, and would combine imported biomass such as cocoa shells with domestically sourced product such as miscanthus to form solid fuel briquettes for domestic use.
If successful, the plant would provide a major boost to miscanthus growers in the southern half of the country who have been left without an outlet for their crops since Joe Hogan's JHM Crops ceased trading earlier this year.
The main outlet for the crop is currently the power plant in Edenderry. However, low crop prices combined with transport costs for Munster-based growers have made the vast majority of crops in the area unviable.