Danish biotech firm Novozymes has signed an agreement with DONG Energy to deliver enzymes for the REnescience plant in Northwich, UK - the first full-scale plant in the world to use enzymes to maximise material recycling and biogas generation from household waste.
DONG explained that with REnescience technology ordinary unsorted household waste is mixed with water and enzymes in a large reactor.
The chemical process then begins and the enzymes dissolve all food waste, labels and similar types of organic waste and turns it into a liquid that can be used for biogas. At the Northwich facility, the biogas will be used to generate around 5 MW of electricity.
The remaining part of the waste is said to be plastic and metals, which can be recycled, and the remainder converted into fuel.
Novozymes and DONG Energy have also agreed to further develop the enzymes for the technology together.
"The further development of the enzymes will help us to continuously optimize the process and, at the same time, extract even more valuable products from the waste,” commented Thomas Dalsgaard, executive vice president at DONG Energy.
“This is both good for the environment and useful in terms of reducing the costs of waste management,” he added.
The REnescience plant in Northwich is expected to be operational in early 2017. It is expected to sort 15 tonnes of waste per hour or 120,000 tonnes per year.
DONG Energy said that it will finance, build and operate the plant in the North West of England and will also look into the possibilities for building similar plants in other places around the world.
The enzyme supply agreement is a long-term non-exclusive agreement.
World First DONG Energy Enzymatic Untreated Waste to Energy Plant for UK
Dong Energy UK is to build the world’s first commercial full-scale plant to produce biogas from untreated Municipal Solid Waste using its REnescience enzyme technology in Northwich, UK.
The Mixed MSW Washing Machine: Denmark's New Fairy Tale or Reality?
Dong Energy has developed a new technology that uses enzymes to recover recyclables, biogas and RDF from unsorted municipal waste in Copenhagen.