Air Compressor Company Involved in Eco Project that Protects the Environment and Benefits Injured Soldiers

Air Compressor Company Involved in Eco Project that Protects the Environment and Benefits Injured Soldiers

In 2007 the South West Devon Waste Partnership was formed, which consisted of Plymouth City Council, Torbay Council and Devon County Council. Their objective was to explore methods of diverting household waste in South West Devon from landfill. The chosen technology was to be thermal treatment to convert energy stored in non-recyclable waste into useable energy in the form of electricity and steam for heating in the most economic, efficient and eco-friendly manner.

In 2008, the United Kingdom joined many participating countries committed to the Climate Change Act, with the prime objective of reducing the UK’s carbon emissions by 80% by 2050.

In 2011, pursuant to the Partnership’s findings, a German energy company, MVV, were awarded a contract to build an “Energy from Waste” power station alongside Her Majesty’s Naval Base Devonport in Plymouth with the capacity to treat all of South West Devon’s non-recyclable waste materials whilst reducing the overall carbon footprint for the same area. Initially there was considerable local opposition to the development, but the objections were soon overcome once it was realised that approximately 73,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions would be eliminated from the atmosphere each year and approximately 600 jobs would be created during construction.

In 2011, MVV’s proposal was for 245,000 tonne capacity energy from waste facility to be located in North Yard Devonport Naval Base, capable of providing environmentally sustainable electricity and heating to HM Naval Base, Devonport. Both the planning permission and an environmental permit for the development were awarded that year, with construction starting in August 2012. The project involved installing a 300mm steam main, an 80mm pumped condensate system and a 50mm gravity condensate system over a 3km distance throughout the naval base. Existing services within this area had to be dismantled and strategically relocated as the project progressed.

The electricity was to be generated via a steam turbine with some of the high pressure steam being diverted from the turbine to the naval base for heating. The presence of a steam customer enables the Facility to operate more efficiently as a power-generating plant.

In order to achieve this objective, the Northern end of the steam pipework system associated with steam transmission throughout the dockyard had to be upgraded and increased in size in order to cope with the substantially increased volume of steam and re-direction of flow. Babcock International, who manage the Naval Base on behalf of the MOD, were particularly concerned that this upgrade, which would take place over several years, would not disrupt the winter heating requirements.

In June 2013, Industrial Air Power Limited, were awarded the contract to upgrade and reinforce the existing steam and condensate pipework by MVV. Industrial Air Power won this contract against stiff competition from other companies both British and German.

Industrial Air Power, a compressed air specialist based in Bridgend and Plymouth, had been carrying out service and installation work at Devonport Dockyard for more than 25 years. Chris Diggins, Managing Director of Industrial Air Power said: “I am absolutely delighted that MVV chose our company to undertake the work on this project. They selected our company due to the standard of service we’ve consistently provided to the Naval Base for more than a quarter of a century. We were fortunate that all of our employees had been previously vetted and cleared by the Naval Base security to work on the site and were fully aware of all health and safety protocols. The most important benefit is that the new facility will greatly reduce carbon emissions, which will have a most beneficial effect on our environment. However, that’s not the only long term benefit. The dockyard has recently opened a £23m rehabilitation centre for injured servicemen and women funded by Help for Heroes and the MOD.

Industrial Air Power was contracted by MVV to fit a heat exchange system that links the brand new rehabilitation centre to the new steam generation facility which will provide the centre with heating and hot water for the future.

Installation work commenced in July 2013 and the initial phase of the project was completed and commissioned by October 2013. Meeting the October deadline was crucial, as the new section of pipe work installed was interfaced with the existing Naval Base system, to be used to heat the Naval Base throughout the winter period.

The IAP project scope, was completed at the end of 2015, was delivered on time and within budget.