Developed by Estover Energy, the £138m ($211m) biomass Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant in Cramlington, Northumberland, is set to generate enough energy to power 52,000 homes when construction is completed by 2018.
The plant will also supply cheap electricity to Aesica and MSD (known as Merck & Co. in North America) which have facilities in an adjacent industrial estate, though a spokesman for the UK Green Investment Bank which is part-funding the project told us neither company has a financial stake in the project.
Aesica is set to benefit by slashing its energy costs, according to Head of engineering Mike Battrum, and hopes to pass these savings on to its customers.
“Once the plant is up and running, the Cramlington site will receive all of its heat and electricity requirements directly from the Biomass plant, and we anticipate savings on the site's current energy spend,” he told Outsourcing-Pharma.com.
“We are constantly striving to achieve efficiencies such as this as they are essential in order to retain and grow our business in a very competitive environment,” he continued. “We win business by delivering excellent service at a competitive price, and savings in energy spend as a result of this project will help us to continue to do so.”
The opportunity to improve its ‘green manufacturing’ footprint coincides with other energy saving initiatives being undertaken across Aesica’s network, though Battrum said “in order to benefit from a project of this scale, we would need to partner with companies such as Estover who are experts in this field.”
Aesica’s GMP Cramlington facility offers controlled API manufacture and packaging services. In 2013, the contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) teamed up with academics to improve efficiency by optimising its API production processes.