The council of the Northern Estonian industrial town of Kunda has adopted the detailed plan for a €4 million biomethane plant planned by Greengas Energy OÜ, regional paper Virumaa Teataja reported.
Marko Tiiman, a member of the management board of Greengas Energy, told the newspaper that the size of the planned investment is now €4 million, up from the previously announced €3.5 million. Tiiman said that if building permits are secured in due time, construction for the plant would begin in August or September.
Greengas Energy has said that the new facility would produce 6-7 million cubic meters of biomethane annually, about as much as is needed to supply all the buses of the public transport systems of the cities of Tartu, Pärnu and Narva combined.
The plant is to produce biomethane from biogas supplied by the local pulp mill of Estonian Cell. The two companies signed a cooperation agreement in June 2016 already.
Greengas Energy is a biofuel producing company established in 2015 that is developed jointly by Glimstedt Energia OÜ and Greengas OÜ.
Estonian Cell's aspen pulp mill began production in Kunda in 2006. The pulp mill, which cost €153 million to build, exports its output to various European and Asian countries. Estonian Cell's annual sales totaled €78 million in 2015.
Estonian Cell launched the production of biogas in 2014 and is the country's biggest biogas producer. Biogas is produced at the plant from wastewater emerging in the production process and the energy value of biogas produced there is approximately 50 gigawatt-hours per year.
The company's biogas reactor is the largest single-unit biogas reactor in Europe. The €11 investment in the biogas manufacturing unit was financed in full by Heinzel Holding GmbH, the sole owner of the company.
Estonian Cell was the first pulp producer in Europe to set up a biogas producing unit next to its core manufacturing operation.
Editor: Aili Vahtla