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Aberdeen firm signs £12m-plus US biocoal deal

Aberdeen firm signs £12m-plus US biocoal deal
An Aberdeen company behind green technology which turns waste wood into a replacement for coal has signed a £12.7million-plus deal in North America.

An Aberdeen company behind green technology which turns waste wood into a replacement for coal has signed a £12.7million-plus deal in North America.

Rotawave Biocoal said yesterday that the contract with US-based investment group Cate Street Capital paved the way for the manufacture and marketing of its targeted intelligent energy system in America and Canada. Under the deal, Cate Street subsidiary Thermogen Industries will produce around 100,000 tonnes of biocoal next year and it hoped that this would eventually rise to one million tonnes annually.

Rotawave’s technology uses microwaves to dry wet or waste wood and then turns it into wood pellets which can be used in coal-fired power stations.

Unlike coal, however, the wood pellets, which produce six times more energy than wood chips, do not generate carbon emissions.

Richard Cyr of Cate Street described biocoal as a “new energy commodity” which could be produced in mass quantities in an efficient and environmentally friendly way.

Rotawave is part of Environmental Energy Group (EEG), which employs nine people focused on project management in Aberdeen and around 70 in manufacturing at a site south of the border in the Isle of Wight.

EEG chairman Bob Rooney said the deal was the first major milestone for the group after three years and £3million of research and development.

Mr Rooney said Cate Street’s confidence in the technology would help Rotawave to market it elsewhere in the world and the firm was specifically targeting Europe and Asia for further growth.

He added that as governments worldwide aimed to reduce their carbon emissions, adapting coal-fired power stations to burn biocoal could extend the life of the plants and save them from closure.

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