TALLINN – The Estonian wind energy producer Nelja Energia opened its first cogeneration plan and pellet factory in Broceni, Latvia on Thursday which is worth 30 million euros.
The pellet business and the combined heat and power production are a new area of activity for the company, but the tests and the initiation period of the pellet factory and the cogeneration plant were passed with success, CEO of the company Martin Kruus said in a press release.
"Cooperation with the partners and also the local team has been great and we are satisfied with the investment," Kruus said and thanked UPB, Hekotek, Inspecta and other partners for good cooperation.
The planned annual production of the modern pellet factory is at least 120,000 tonnes of pellets. The plant is supplied with energy by the cogeneration plant working with biofuel, which has the thermal power of 19.4 MW and electrical power of 3.98 MW. The annual estimated electricity production of the cogeneration plant is 30,000 MWh.
The total cost of the investment is nearly 30 million euros, and the plant and factory are to create 35 new jobs.
Fuel for the cogeneration plant is sourced from the surplus bark and chipped wood from the pellet production process ensuring zero waste production. "To be very efficient and eco-friendly the CHP has a flue-gas cleaner which provides an additional 4MW of heat," said Toms Naburgs, CEO of Nelja Energia's subsidiary Nelja Energia SIA.
Nelja Energia started the test production of pellets at the beginning of the current year. By today, the tests have been concluded successfully and the first orders have been delivered. Most of the plant's production is exported to the European market. The cogeneration plant has passed all the network tests required in Latvia and the power is sent to the Nordic and Baltic power market.
The pellet factory is managed by Pellet 4energia SIA and the cogeneration plant by Technological Solution SIA. Both of them are Latvian subsidiaries of Nelja Energia.
Nelja Energia, based on Northern European and Estonian capital, is the biggest producer and developer of wind power in the Baltic states. The company has wind farms in three Baltic states with a total capacity of 280 MW and, in addition to the wind farms, also has two biogas plants in Estonia. Company assets are worth more than 400 million euros.
The newest projects of Nelja Energia are the 60 MW wind farm in Silute, Lithuania, with a total investment of more than 100 million euros, the cogeneration plant and pellet factory in Latvia with a total investment of 30 million euros, and the 7.05 MW expansion of Tooma wind farm in Estonia with a total investment of 11.5 million euros.