Voltalia to build 2 biomass cogen plants

FRANCE - French renewable energy producer Voltalia expects to begin construction on two biomass-fired power projects in France with a total power capacity of about 15 megawatts (MW). The new facilities are planned to be commissioned by mid-2011.

The projects, which were selected in 2008 by French energy authority Comission de Regulation de l' Energie (CRE) after the second request for proposals for biomass-fired combined heat and power plants was launched, are to be located in the Poitou-Charentes region and the Franche-Compte region, respectively.

The Champdeniers power facility, which will be located next to the site of the Union Laitiere des Deux-Sevres, will have a capacity of 8 MW.

Currently, upon final decision, Voltalia is analyzing companies' proposals for project management development. As for the Corbenay plant, with a capacity of 7.2 MW and to be located next to the CFP Parisot Group plant, the project management company Soten was selected about three months ago; the project is expected to begin construction in the second quarter of 2010.

Both projects, with an estimated cost of $70 million, will be equipped with one steam turbine and one boiler. At the Champdeniers plant, the boiler will be fed with crop pellets and miscanthus, while at the Corbenay facility the boiler will be fed with woodchips.

The second request for proposals that was launched by the French government in 2006 and whose results were announced in 2008 seeks to increase biomass power production for a total installed capacity of 300 MW. Proposals for a third request are under evaluation by CRE authorities, and projects selected are to be announced in January 2010 for a total installed capacity of 250 MW.



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