With the delivery of two steel digesters, the proven Kompogas® technology has established a foothold in Greece. The project in the Epirus Region marks an initial step by Greece towards the energetic exploitation of organic waste. The plant will produce 5.4 mio m3/a biogas which is transformed into 11,500 MWh/a of electrical energy.

The Epirus Region is to be the location of Greece’s first dry anaerobic digestion plant, which will in future handle 105,000 tonnes of municipal solid waste a year. The organic fraction will be removed in the sorting line of the new Mechanical-Biological Treatment (MBT) plant, and then processed in the anaerobic digestion system.

The core module of this system, comprising two PF1500 Kompogas® digesters, will be delivered by the Swiss cleantech company Hitachi Zosen Inova (HZI). HZI has also concluded a service and support contract with its Greek partner Terna Energy. Terna Energy is to build the project, which is co-financed by the EU, as part of a public-private partnership with the Epirus Region, and is to operate the plant for the next 25 years.

Contributing to Modern Waste Management
The EU Landfill Directive obliges member states to avoid landfilling waste wherever possible and to give preference to an alternative. Member states are also set recycling targets, and face having to pay penalties if these are not adequately met.

For Greece as a founding member of the EU, this project is a groundbreaking step with regard to dealing with municipal waste in the future. Waste and recycling management is in an early phase in Greece, and a large amount of the country’s municipal solid waste is sent to landfill. “The region has enormous potential for biological and thermal energy-from-waste (EfW) plants. It is particularly significant for HZI to be part of this project, which is the first of its kind and thus of utmost importance,” said HZI CEO Franz-Josef Mengede.

Energy from Organic Waste
The decisive factors in the Kompogas® technology ultimately being chosen were the numerous reference plants worldwide coupled with quality aspects. Mr. Emmanuel Maragoudakis, CEO at Terna Energy, said: “When it came to selecting the supplier, our focus was on the technology, and we were impressed from the outset by the robustness and first-class quality Kompogas® offers.”

The two steel digesters will in future process 38,700 tonnes of pre-sorted organic waste under anaerobic conditions and produce biogas. The yield of 5.4 mio. Nm3 of biogas per year will be converted to deliver 11,500 MWh/a of electricity, which will be fed into the grid and will be sufficient to supply 3,000 households in the region. Meanwhile, 12,000 tonnes of CO2 will also be saved. At the end of the digestion process, the digestate will be mixed with other organic substrates and composted for 6 weeks. The resulting compost will be used to restore old quarries and mines.

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