German biogas plant manufacturer Weltec Biopower is to build a 500 kW biogas plant in Saint-Varent in Western France, Weltec said on Wednesday.
The plant has been commissioned by Paris-based developer Methaneo, for its “cooperative agricultural biogas” plant project, in which the company develops, finances and erects a biogas facility in cooperation with local partners.
Construction work on the facility will begin in January 2013, and the plant is to go live and starting feeding electricity into the French grid as early as July 2013, Weltec said.
The 4,900 square metre stainless-steel fermenter is to be filled with an agricultural substrate mix consisting of cattle manure, sheep manure, chicken manure and grain residue.
The biogas plant project, known as “Cap‘Ter Methanisation SAS” is being billed by Methaneo as an economic regeneration project for the region.
“We have decided on Weltec as our cooperation partner because this company is capable of integrating our concept in its biogas plants,” said Yann Mercier, director of Methaneo.
The plant will be the sixth agricultural biogas plant constructed by Vechta-based Weltec in France since its first two projects in 2009.
Jens Albartus, Weltec’s chief executive, said that the cooperation with Methaneo is a signal of the potential for future projects in France. “The investment mood in France is positive in our segment,” he said. “In 2012, the French Environment and Energy Management Agency for the development of regenerative energies (ADEME) received twice as many project enquiries than in the prior year, and counting.”
Weltec’s focus on international projects comes as the German biogas market is in the depths of a demand slump. According to the German Biogas Association, construction of new plants in Germany declined 80% year-on-year.