EQTEC Iberia SLU (EQTEC Iberia), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ireland-headed gasification technology developers EQTEC plc, has announced that it has entered into an agreement for the development of a proposed 1.18 MWe net biomass gasification power plant project in Gratens, France.
According to a statement, the agreement entered into is between EQTEC Iberia, and Biomasse 31, which is the existing project special purpose vehicle (SPV), and the Barthe family who are the owners of Biomasse 31, and reflects the key terms required to enable the completion of the necessary project engineering, project management and project documentation needed for final legal documentation relating to the project
Pursuant to the agreement, the Parties will work towards definitive legal documents pursuant to which the Parties and the funders introduced by each party will, inter alia, invest in the SPV in order to achieve financial close of the project.
The nature and quantum of such investment, and the share of such funding between the Parties, is yet to be determined. It is intended that EQTEC will have the option, but not the obligation, to invest equity capital into the SPV.
We are very excited to have entered into this agreement with EQTEC for the development of this project, which is so important for us and the local community. We have been working on this for a number of years without being able to find a reliable and professional technology partner until now. The depth of technical understanding and capabilities of EQTEC’s technical team is, in our view, unmatched in the sector as per the excellent references that were given to us. Now having experienced working with them, we have no doubt that we will make a success out of this project, which we believe is the first of its type in France, said Pierre-Olivier Barthe, CEO of Biomass 31.
Biomass power plant
The project is proposed to comprise a 1.18 MW net integrated biomass gasification power plant in Gratens, France for which EQTEC is to provide its gasification technology with a fixed cost EPC solution.
EQTEC Iberia will act as the project manager and provide technology, equipment, and services, including development services estimated to be worth EUR 5.5 million. EQTEC Iberia to incur costs of up to EUR 100 000 before financial close for the provision of the engineering services required to obtain the required permitting to reach financial close, which is proposed to be repaid to EQTEC Iberia on financial close.
EQTEC Iberia has exclusivity to develop the Project up to December 31, 2020, which the Parties consider to be the expected long stop deadline necessary to obtain all the required permits to achieve financial close and commence construction. The Parties can mutually agree to extend the exclusivity period.
Biomasse 31 is responsible for all project permitting and licensing. Application for certain licenses and permits need to be finalised before construction can commence.
It is very encouraging to sign our first agreement for a commercial project in France, with a partner so embedded in the local community and so committed to developing energy transition infrastructure throughout the country. We have been in discussions with the Barthe family since the beginning of the year and we are delighted that they have been strong advocates of our technology. In our view, France has always been a market where innovation and creative solutions in clean energy are given full support both from the public and private sectors. Our technology has been positively reviewed by French entities, such as the National Alliance for Coordination of Research for Energy (ANCRE), and has obtained endorsements from the team of academics running the Research Pilot Plant built by EQTEC in Lorraine University. We strongly believe that our potential market in France is only starting to open up and the Project, combined with our presence at Lorraine, can act as the foundation for growth and development in the region, said David Palumbo, CEO of EQTEC.