Greenhouse horticulturists in West-Brabant want to save 100,000 tonnes of CO2 per year

The horticulturists of Energie Cluster Steenbergen and Nieuw Prinsenland join forces with Enpuls Warmte Infra and SUEZ ReEnergy. The parties sign a letter of intent to use the residual heat and CO2 released during the incineration of non-recyclable waste streams in the greenhouses. The aim of this project - Osiris - is to achieve a CO2 reduction of more than 100,000 tonnes of CO2 per year. This can be compared to the annual CO2 emissions of more than 31,000 households. An important milestone for horticulturists on their way to climate-neutral greenhouse horticulture. In order to achieve this, the partners need an appropriate SDE++ regulation from the government. This scheme should help investors eliminate the difference between prices for fossil fuels and sustainable alternatives.

Use of residual heat and CO2 important for climate-neutral greenhouse horticulture

At the modern ReEnergy waste-to-energy plant, SUEZ converts 360,000 tonnes of non-recyclable waste into energy and raw materials every year. But it can do even better. Residual flows such as residual heat and CO2 can be put to good use in glasshouse horticulture in the region. Natural gas is still used in the cultivation of vegetables, fruit and ornamental plants in the Energie Cluster Steenbergen and Nieuw Prinsenland glasshouse horticulture area - a cooperative of glasshouse horticultural entrepreneurs in Dinteloord. The heat and CO2 produced by this can also be supplied by SUEZ ReEnergy, so that these residual flows can be properly reused.

"As horticulturalists, we share the ambition set out in the Horticultural Agreement to achieve climate-neutral greenhouse horticulture by 2040. Our collaboration with Enpuls Warmte Infra and SUEZ ReEnergy is a good example of system integration: the waste from one is raw material for the other. This enables us to reduce our annual natural gas consumption by almost 100 million m3 in the short term, and this chain collaboration saves us 100,000 tonnes of CO2 and 63,000 kilos of nitrogen per year in the municipality of Steenbergen," says Ardie van Honk, sustainability consultant for Energie Cluster Steenbergen and Nieuw Prinsenland.

Current SDE++ regulation not appropriate
An investment of 100 million euros is required for the capture of residual heat and CO2, the laying of pipelines and the supply of energy to greenhouse horticulture. SUEZ is in consultation with network company Enpuls Warmte Infra for the construction and management of the pipelines that transport the heat and CO2 to the greenhouse horticultural areas. This subsidiary of the Enexis Group develops and builds heat infrastructure.

The partners need government support for the project in order to eliminate the difference between 'fossil' cost prices and sustainable alternatives. The current SDE++ scheme is not suitable to cover this difference, as it does not yet include a category for the capture of CO2 and the supply of this CO2 to greenhouse horticulture.

"The project partners are counting on the government to make the SDE++ 2021 subsidy scheme suitable for this project. This is a matter of some urgency, as the installation of SUEZ ReEnergy will undergo major maintenance in 2023," says Marc Das, director of SUEZ ReEnergy. "The reason for this is that the delivery time for installation components - such as heat exchangers and reactors - has a long lead time. In the meantime, however, we are starting up the permit procedures".

"This project is in line with the plans for a regional heat network, which is part of RES West-Brabant's Regional Heat Structure Policy Plan", says Mark Bouw, heat infrastructure manager at Enpuls. "This project therefore makes it possible to realise a significant positive impact on the energy transition in the province".

Read the Dutch version of this press release