The Dutch are still the masters when it comes to reclaiming land, but maybe they will be adding a new string to their bow. The Dutch agriculture minister, Gerda Verburg, has unveiled the world’s largest biomass power plant to run exclusively on chicken sh poultry manure.
The plant will convert a third of the nation’s chicken waste into energy while running at a capacity of 36.5 megawatts, which is enough to power 90,000 homes.
The €150 million plant is located in Moerdijk and was built by the Dutch multi-utility company Delta. It will convert roughly 440,000 tons of chicken manure into energy annually and generate more than 270 million kilowatt hours of electricity per year. The plant also addresses a key environmental problem in the Netherlands, namely getting rid of the large volumes of manure but at a reasonable cost.
Part of the attraction of biomass energy lies in its 2 for 1 benefit, as it generates energy whilst, at the same time, disposing of the unwanted waste.
The biomass plant is described as being carbon neutral as it prevents the manure from just sitting around all day emitting greenhouse gases into the air. After extracting the methane from the poultry waste and burning it, the resultant ash will be used to make fertilizers and other agricultural products.