Sergiy Shpak, Director of Ecodevelop, spoke about the experience of building modern biogas plants and the company’s development.
When did the company start to deal with bioenergy projects and in what direction is the development going now?
The first pilot project of the biogas station (BGS) was implemented by Ecodevelop 2 years ago. Then we acted as a customer of the project in the village of Bziv, Kyiv region. In the process of implementing our own biogas station, we have gained invaluable experience that helps us in the construction of modern biogas stations.
Today, in addition to operating the Bziv station and bringing it to the planned capacity, as well as upgrading it to increase efficiency, the company is engaged in designing several bioenergy facilities with a capacity of 1.5 MW each for one of the leaders of the agro-industrial complex of Ukraine – Gals Agro.
What are the benefits for the project participants in the construction of BGS?
It is beneficial to each participant. In particular:
Benefits for farmers: 24/7 energy self-sufficience, business diversification and additional profit, reduction of production costs due to savings on energy carriers, increased product competitiveness, status and certification of organic and eco-products for export to EU countries along with value added, increased yields by 30% due to organic fertilizers, which are produced after recycling.
Business benefits: investment projects with a payback period of 3-6 years, environmental investment and social responsibility, a dynamic business in the renewable energy sector, as well as guaranteed export of agro-waste products to Europe.
Benefits for communities: creating business entities, filling the local budget with taxes, developing a rural community, solving environmental issues (clean ground, water, air) and the possibility of creating an independent heating system.
Benefits for local authorities: integrated development of the region due to the attraction of “green” investments, the possibility of using biomethane as a fuel for public transport (13 million cars in the world are fueled by biogas), the possibility of creating an energy cooperative.
The biogas market in Ukraine in comparison with the European one is only taking the very first steps. Therefore, most projects are created again. Whose experience do you learn from?
Yes it is. This is why our specialists have visited many European countries over the past few years, getting into the market of modern technologies and monitoring the global industry leaders. And two years ago, Ecodevelop signed an agreement with the general partner – German engineering company Krieg & Fischer Ingenieure GmbH. The history of this company began in 1999, on its account the implementation of more than 150 projects of biogas stations in 21 countries of the world. This company is internationally recognized and specializes in the development of biogas station technologies, design and engineering support of projects. Its feature is the status of an accredited technical expert of the EBRD, as well as an independent expert in the arbitral tribunal in Germany. This makes it possible to solve any problems in complex: between investors, contractors, customers, agricultural enterprises and insurance agencies. That is why we in Ukraine also chose the format of engineering, which gives us the opportunity to be flexible in the selection of equipment and pricing. At the same time, we are not tied to one supplier and general contractor. As a result, we can offer our customers a variety of technical solutions with a flexible budget for solving a wide variety of tasks.
In which direction are you planning the further development of Ecodevelop?
In several directions in parallel. For example, a several facilities for processing household waste are at the stage of business plans in Kyiv and Vinnytsa now. In these projects we are working on a comprehensive program, which includes sorting with further processing of organics and all other elements of household waste. These large-scale projects will allow both processing waste completely and making money on energy resources, as well as solving environmental problems.
Another unique area is the processing of food waste by a 6 MW biogas station, which has already been applied to the Kyiv General Plan.
We were also the first in Ukraine to receive accreditation at Ukrgasbank as a general contractor for biogas – EPC.
Our specialists studied all the features of the construction, commissioning and operation of biogas stations. This made it possible to correct all the errors that had inhibited the work of the Bziv station, previously made by the Contractor in the project documentation and technologies. And now we are preparing to present the station Bziv to the public this month.
Summing up, we can say that we have done a lot of work on the analysis of typical omissions on implemented projects in Ukraine.