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Koehler starts with the groundbreaking ceremony in Dollbergen near Hanover construction of further biomass combined heat and power plant.
“A construction project of this magnitude deserves a decent groundbreaking ceremony,” says Günter Fölting, one of the managing directors of DBE - Dollbergen Bioenergie GmbH. “We want our construction project to be under a lucky star.” Together with Birgit Hagebölling, his colleague on the management board, he has placed a time capsule in the foundation stone, which, in addition to a drawing of the property and some small change, also contains a current daily newspaper.
Commissioning planned for March 2020
The construction project is subject to a tight schedule. The biomass combined heat and power plant in Dollbergen, which is planned on the basis of the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG 2017), is to be connected to the grid and thus commence operation in March 2020.
The key figures are impressive. The power plant, which will produce around 67,860 megawatt hours of electricity, will cost 40 million euros. In Dollbergen, untreated wood will be burned, which will simultaneously generate electricity and process steam using combined heat and power technology. The wood used consists of wood cuttings from landscaping, roadside wood cuttings, residual forest wood from mechanical processing, wood chips and industrial residual wood, as well as screen overflow from composting. About 130,000 tons are required per year.
The technology is CO₂-neutral
“If biomass rots, it releases the same amount of CO₂ as in thermal utilization,” explains Hagebölling. “Thermal utilization is an idea CO₂-neutral form of secondary utilization, as only the CO₂, which is already stored in the wood, is released. “At the same time we are thus replacing conventional and in particular fossil fuels and are helping to reach our national climate goals.”
The main shareholder behind the project is Koehler Renewable Energy (KRE), a subsidiary of the Koehler Group based in Oberkirch, Baden. KRE is building the project together with Umwelt Management AG UMaAG. However, the team has a challenging year ahead of it, because in addition to the construction, the team also has to be hired.
Power plant manager already on board
“At least, we have already recruited the power plant manager,” says Fölting, who is pleased to have found an experienced man for the job. “His expertise will enable him to provide us with excellent support right from the construction phase.”
Hagebölling and Fölting, who are both division managers at KRE, already have a wealth of experience in the field of biomass power plants. Dollbergen is already the sixth location and the seventh power plant to be built and operated by the Oberkirch-based company. With a capacity of 10 megawatts, it is also KRE's largest power plant.
Words of welcome from politics and business
In addition to Hagebölling, Fölting and Dr. Stefan Karrer, technical director of the Koehler Group, Werner Backeberg, mayor of the municipality of Uetze, to which Dollbergen belongs, and Michael Dette, deputy regional president of the Hanover region, were present at the laying of the foundation stone. In his welcoming address, Mayor Backeberg stressed how important the jobs created by the construction are for the municipality.
Uwe Leonhardt, Managing Director of Umweltmanagement AG UMaAG, and Dr. Detlev Bruhnke, Managing Director of AVISTA OIL Deutschland GmbH, also addressed those present. AVISTA OIL is the customer for the steam that is generated in the power plant in addition to electricity. “In order to make optimum use of their output, biomass power plants must be built where they are needed,” explains Fölting. This is why the Dollbergen location with the customer AVISTA OIL is ideal and a win-win situation for everyone involved.