Denmark’s largest coal-fired plant Asnæs Power Station operated by Dong Energy has secured a new renewable energy supply contract, which allows the coal-fired plant to convert to biomass.

According to Dong, the energy output generated from the converted plant will be supplied to pharma firms Novo Nordisk, Novozymes and district heating customers in Kalundborg. In this regard, a new steam and district heating agreement for 20 years has been forged recently between Novo Nordisk, Novozymes, Kalundborg Forsyning and Dong Energy.

Under the 20-year contract, the existing thermal station in Kalundborg will be converted and the resulting new wood chip-fired plant will be connected to the former’s existing installations and systems.

The new plant will generate steam, district heating and power from sustainable wood chips from 2019 end with the conversion work slated to begin this summer.

With a sustainable alternative found to the Asnæs Power Station, Dong says that it can move ahead with a complete phase-out of coal in its Danish portfolio.

Dong Energy executive vice president Thomas Dalsgaard said: “The future belongs to sustainable energy sources such as wind, solar and biomass.

“We'll therefore be phasing out all use of coal at our power stations by 2023, and the decision, which was made together with our customers, is an important step on the way."

Following the conversion, the new renewable plant is anticipated to reduce 800,000 tonnes of carbon emissions which is equivalent to taking off about 400,000 cars off the road.

In late March, Dong Energy announced that it will build a large-scale biogas plant alongside Danish biogas expert Bigadan near the Asnæs Power Station. The new biogas plant which will be operated by Bigadan will use residues collected from certain Novo Nordisk and Novozymes factories and convert them into bio natural gas.

Image: The Asnæs Power Station in Kalundborg, Denmark. Photo: courtesy of DONG Energy A/S.