Euroforest building the road to success

Kent Renewable Energy: An Insight into Euroforest’s Exclusive Supply Contract with Renewable Energy Biomass Plant

Ben Manterfield, General Manager for East and Southeast England, gives an insight into Kent Renewable Energy (KRE), a biomass plant and Euroforest’s largest single site customer, who we solely supply.  Ben’s principal role is to oversee the supply of timber, sawmill co products, and recycled timber into KRE, which takes in240,000 tonnes per annum.  

“Since we commenced supply at Kent Renewable Energy Limited in 2018, I’m often asked the same questions: “What is KRE? How does the wood get there? What happens to the timber when it arrives?”  To fully illustrate the process, I’m going to map out the journey of a load of woodchips from a Euroforest site managed by William Rolph, Arboriculture Manager, to Kent Renewable Energy Limited (KRE) in Sandwich, Kent."  

What is KRE?

“Kent Renewable Energy Limited was built between 2016-2018 and is owned by CIP, a Danish pension investment company. It has an annual intake of 240,000 tonnes of wood-fibre across a multitude of products including roundwood, hardwood chips, and A grade recycled materials (chipped pallets& packaging). The plant generates 28MWH of electricity annually, with the power produced enough to supply 50,000 homes. Over recent years there have been exciting developments surrounding the site and it now powers a new retail park, hotel, petrol station, and will soon provide heat & power to a vertical farm currently under construction opposite the site.”

The Woodchip’s Journey

"Our journey begins on a Forestry England site where Euroforest were awarded a roadside clearance contract to remove dangerous trees adjacent to the public highway.  Euroforest contractor, C & R Forestry felled and presented a significant volume of trees affected by Ash Dieback to the edge of the public highway with a Sennebogen 718E.  

"Once complete, the chipping operation began with D G Forestry Ltd who supplied an Albach Diamant 2000 chipper, operated by Wayne Lewis.  This high output specialist machine can chip large volumes of timber and forest residue at roadside into adjacent lorries.

“A W Jenkinson provided walking floor lorries that work in conjunction with chipper operator Wayne, who begins to feed the Ash trees through his chipper and blows the chips into the walking floor trailer. Once the trailer reaches its capacity or maximum road weight the chipper stops, and the trailer is covered ready for its onward journey.  This process is repeated multiple times throughout the day thanks to the efficient service provided to us by A W Jenkinson Transport Limited.  

"Once loaded and secure, the lorry travels to KRE and on arrival the driver presents the delivery paperwork to the team manning the gatehouse before proceeding to the weighbridge to record the lorry’s loaded weight.

"At the weighbridge the driver uncovers their trailer to allow the load to be inspected, at which time a sample is also taken to test the moisture content.

“Once the load has been sampled the driver carefully reverses over the fuel pits, the back doors are opened, and discharge commences.  After the initial rush of chips, the lorry’s internal mechanism begins to operate, and the chips are simply ‘walked out’ of the trailer.

“Once the lorry has fully discharged and the trailer is empty, the driver sweeps out the trailer, closes the rear doors, returns to the weighbridge to record the empty weight, and leaves the site.

“Now that the chips have been discharged into the fuel pit, the fuel hall crane comes to collect them. The crane resembles that classic arcade game where you try and grab a teddy bear with a grab. Thankfully, the fuel hall grab is more successful than the arcade version!

“The grab has the capability to pick up approximately 6 tonnes of material, which are carried into the fuel hall where it empties, ready to be mixed with other chips overnight.

"From here, the chips are fed into the fuel system where they are passed through a series of conveyors before reaching the silos at the top of the boiler. The chips and then slowly fed into the furnace where they are burned and turned into heat.  

“The heat generated is used to heat water to create steam. This high-pressure steam is then used to power a turbine which through its movements creates electricity. The electricity generated is then exported to the grid, with the only remnants of the process being a small percentage of ash.”

A huge thank you to Ben for his insight into the work Euroforest do on multiple fronts to supply wood fibre into Kent Renewable Energy for renewable energy.  If you have any standing or roadside material available, please contact your local area manager or Ben Manterfield who will be happy to help.

Ben Manterfield (General Manager for East and Southeast England) - 07500 664563