I thought I was never going to see the day when a large power plant would run entirely on biomass. You can understand my pessimism when you are told that a MW of powerplant will require about 8000 T of biomass every year. A 300 MW power plant will hence require an awful 2.5 million T of biomass every year. That’s a heck of a lot of, well, anything.
Well, there are some courageous folks around the world. Drax in the UK, for one.
They are building 3×300 MW furnaces on biomass, and are arranging for a 8 million T biomass supply from around the world. (By comparison, India’s total biomass based power production – outside of bagasse power – is only about 1500 MW. So the Drax project alone would be about 60% of total Indian biomass installed capacity!)
While I am certainly overawed, good news, I must say. If they can operate it sustainably for a few years, biomass power would have definitely reached a milestone.
Will be really keen to know how they plan to manage the supply chain. This is what the news report has to say “The vast majority of the biomass will come from North America, but there will also be locally sourced supplies of willow and elephant grass to power the furnaces. ”