AN innovative biofuels plant is still on course to create almost 400 jobs in the next two years.
The planned INEOS plant at Seal Sands, near Hartlepool, could be constructed within months and go on line by 2013 – helping to create 350 construction jobs and over 40 permanent roles.
But bosses say they need an indication of Government backing for the scheme and were encouraged when Secretary of State Caroline Spelman said she wanted to know more about INEOS’ pioneering technology.
The biorefinery could produce around 150,000 tonnes per year of bioethanol, which is enough to run 1.5 million family cars running on E10 petrol.
It would save over 500,000 tonnes per year of CO2 and divert more than a million households’ waste away from landfill.
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Caroline Spelman, expressed an interest in INEOS’ pioneering technology after Ian Swales, Liberal Democrat MP for Redcar, raised the plans for the scheme in the House of Commons.
INEOS Bio will use a new process to produce bioethanol and renewable power from any carbon containing waste material, including household waste.
The bioethanol could be used as a renewable transport fuel in vehicles on the road today or as a chemical intermediate for the production of other materials and chemicals.
INEOS chief executive Dr Peter Williams said: “We fully support plans to ban the landfill of biodegradable waste and to move towards a zero waste economy in order to become more resource efficient.
“INEOS Bio presents a unique opportunity to put the UK at the forefront of this technology, with Europe’s first plant ready to go at Seal Sands in the North-East of England.”
INEOS has written to the Secretary of State to secure a meeting with her as soon as possible.
The firm was last year awarded £7.3m grant from One North East and the Department for Energy and Climate Change to build what would be Europe’s first advanced bioethanol from waste plant.