Development consent granted for ‘energy park’

A development consent order has been granted for Riverside Energy Park, a mixed energy development in the London Borough of Bexley in Belvedere.

The development combines:

  • an energy from waste plant with a generating capacity of around 76MW. The site is adjacent to an existing energy from waste plant at Belvedere.
  • an anaerobic digestion facility with an annual waste throughput of up to 40,000 tonnes per annum of green and food waste;
  • enabling infrastructure for combined heat and power with capacity to provide heat to 10,500 homes;
  • PV panels with a generating capacity of around 1MW;
  • a battery storage facility with capacity of around 20MW.

Developer Cory said that “The majority of the waste will be transported via barges on the River Thames” Dougie Sutherland, group chief executive of Cory Riverside Energy, said: “Currently, over two million tonnes of London’s non-recyclable waste is sent to landfill or shipped overseas, and so more domestic capacity is needed urgently.”

Vattenfall Heat UK has announced plans to develop a heat network for local households adjacent to the energy park. It will work with Cory on an application for funding from the government’s Heat Networks Investment Project. Vattenfall will design the heat network and, if the project moves to the construction phase, lead the construction of the heat network infrastructure, operate the network, and supply and look after residential and commercial customers.

Vattenfall plans for a low temperature district heating network which will:

  • improve performance and reduce lost electricity revenues of the energy from waste plant;
  • use lower temperatures to reduce network heat losses, meaning more efficient operational cashflows;
  • result in lower capital costs on pipework, and;
  • be flexibly developed to enable future developments to connect to high-temperature legacy systems – meaning the network can be extended to link to existing properties, further reducing carbon emissions.

The company said the design will allow for thousands more properties to be added to the heat network as they are constructed in the future. Its vision is to create an East London Heat Network, extending approximately 30km across Greenwich, Bexley, Tower Hamlets and Newham. It will supply heat to  existing properties and new developments by re-using heat that is currently being wasted. Individual developments would connect to the East London Heat Network as they are built. The  project could eventually supply the equivalent of 75,000 homes, although in reality it would link up to residential, commercial, retail, and industrial buildings.

Vattenfall is the largest operator of district heating networks in western Europe, supplying to 1.7 million households across Sweden, Germany and the Netherlands