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Veolia acquires Hungarian biomass power plant

Veolia acquires Hungarian biomass power plant
Veolia Energy Hungary has acquired the biomass power plant in Szakoly. The foundation stone of the power plant was laid in 2006 and its operation started three years later. The power plant is Hungary's first biomass-fired power plant with a greenfield investment (photo courtesy Veolia).

France-headed waste management and energy utility major Veolia Environnement SA (Veolia) has announced that it has, via its subsidiary Veolia Energy Hungary Co. Ltd, acquired DBM Zrt from its former owner NRG Power Szakoly Kft. With the acquisition of the Szakoly biomass power plant, Veolia expands its renewable energy activities in Hungary.

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The Szakoly power plant, which started its activities in 2009, produces electricity from the combustion of woodchips and sawmill by-products.

With a capacity of 19.8 MW it produces 130 GWh of electricity per year for the national grid.

In Hungary, Veolia has been a forerunner in the field of renewable energy production from biomass through its power plants in Pécs and Dorog. I am delighted by the takeover of the Szakoly biomass power plant, which strengthens our position and anchors our presence in eastern Hungary, where we have already been operating the Debrecen and Nyíregyháza power plants since 2015, said György Palkó, CEO of Veolia Hungary.

In 2015 in Hungary, 10.5 percent of gross electricity produced was from renewable energy sources.

Our target is the long-term efficient and successful management of the power plant, which employs 55 people. We are exploring further developments, including cogeneration. The heat produced during the generation of electricity could be used for heating greenhouses in partnerships with fruit and vegetable producers. Biomass represented 52 percent of the renewable energy sources, which can be further increased by the continuous operation of the Szakoly power plant, said Attila Vollár, Head of DBM.

It will contribute to the achievement of Hungary’s targeted 14.65 percent share of renewable energy sources in gross energy production by 2020.

In Hungary, Veolia operates power plants and heating networks, notably for the cities of Pécs, Dorog, Esztergom, and Tata.

In Pécs, Veolia operates one of the largest 100 percent biomass cogeneration heating networks in Europe, which is supplied by straw and wood.

Veolia in Hungary produces more than 600 GWh of electricity a year and also provides energy services to more than 30 industrial customers as well as for buildings.

The transaction has been approved by the competition authorities.

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