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Foresight boosts UK waste processing capacity with biogas plants acquisition

UK-headed infrastructure and private equity investment manager Foresight Group LLP has announced the completion of the acquisition of an operational portfolio of two large-scale anaerobic digestion (AD) plants and seven composting assets in the UK for an undisclosed sum.

The sites are located across East Anglia and the East Midlands. Between them, the AD plants provide 2.8 MW of electrical power generation capacity and related waste heat use, 450 Nm3 per hour of biomethane export capacity to grid and related carbon dioxide (CO2) sales and capacity to process in excess of 95 000 tonnes per annum of energy crops, agricultural waste and industrial/commercial food waste whilst also benefiting from feed-in tariff (FIT) and renewable heat incentive (RHI) revenue.

We are very much looking forward to working with Material Change to optimise the performance of these AD and composting sites and to building on our strong relationship with Heathpatch to complete further acquisitions together as part of our wider AD aggregation strategy, said Robert Guest, Foresight Group LLP.

The composting sites have a capacity to accept in excess of 155 000 tonnes per annum of primarily green waste to produce circa 100 000 tonnes per annum of high-quality compost using open-windrow (green waste) and in-vessel (green mixed with ABPR food waste) methods. The additional processing capacity means Foresight’s portfolio of 40 waste projects has a combined waste processing capacity of more than 2 million tonnes per annum.

Foresight has established a prominent position in AD having invested previously into 18 greenfield projects across the UK with a capacity of 16.7 MWe and this secondary acquisition leverages off that experience to build upon Foresight’s existing footprint. According to the company, the transaction demonstrates its “appetite to aggregate operational AD assets to enable it to consolidate its strong market position in the UK and to export its deep experience in the sector to Europe, Australia, North America and beyond.”

The transaction has seen the formation of a partnership between Foresight and Material Change Ltd and its parent company Heathpatch Ltd. As part of the deal, Material Change has entered into long-term feedstock supply, digestate offtake and management & maintenance services contracts.

We are delighted to have entered into this partnership with Foresight and look forward to developing and enhancing the acquired sites and also to acquiring further sites and assets. We hope that the combination of Foresight’s expertise and our knowledge and experience in agriculture, waste processing, AD development and operation will make us a first choice for anyone considering the sale, or enhancement, of AD assets, said Charles Course, Material Change Ltd and Heathpatch Ltd.

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