News | Aardvark Environment Matters



Collaboration with Oxford Brookes MBA Programme

by Nick Leaney

Aardvark was delighted to have the opportunity to collaborate with the Oxford Brookes MBA programme to help unlock the potential for internationalization of our innovative energy technology knowledge.  The students were able to draw on the team's experience of exporting knowledge to Canada to identify key performance indicators, potential market barriers and ways to capitalise on the favourable economic and political climate for renewable energy.  The MBA students' final report and presentation has provided us with a useful and valuable framework going forward and we have already implemented some of their recommendations.

Aardvark continues to seek opportunities to integrate with leading energy, environment and sustainability academic programmes with UK Universities and we are excited to have been invited to participate in future MBA project collaborations with Oxford Brookes University as well as with the One Planet MBA programme at the University of Exeter.

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Successful Material Change for Anaerobic Digestion and Composting Facilities

by Mark Clayton

Aardvark EM Limited were part of the advisory team to Foresight Group on the successful acquisition of the Material Change portfolio which comprises of anaerobic digestion (AD) and composting facilities. Aardvark's role was to provide assessments of feedstock supplies of both purpose grown crops and wastes for two AD plants: one generating 2.8 MW of electricity and one providing 430 m3/hr of biomethane into the gas network. In addition, Aardvark assessed digestate management options and the requirements regarding storage, spreading and nutrient recovery from this product.

 Aardvark EM Ltd is a specialist supplier of services and solutions to the AD and organic waste sector, which include:

  • Plant optimisation - enhancing the performance of operation of plants
  • Feedstock valuations - using its tool Feedsum to compare feedstock values against their actual gas production and hence worth
  • Digestate management using Landspread -  Aardvark's proprietary tool developed specifically to determine storage requirements, number of spreading days and nutrient recovery across the UK.
  • Plant recovery; stepping in to provide WAMITAB qualified technical support for poorly performing plants

Aardvark has an experienced technical team that has had significant involvement in over 30 AD schemes in the UK and 8 internationally. The company has also run its own small-scale AD system since 2012 at its base in Somerset and so has the hands-on practical experience to understand technical, operational and biological requirements for running fully commercially fundable AD operations.

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Capacity Market Auction for 2021/22

by Alan Taylor

The provisional results are out for the auction of the 50 GW of capacity required to provide balancing services to National Grid from the winter of 2021/2022. Compared to the last such auction, in December 2016, there has been some dramatic changes, with the most striking being the clearing price dropping to £8.40 per kW/yr, compared to £22.50 for the year 2020/21. This indicates that there has been a fundamental change in the type of generation that has been successful. The majority of the capacity (86%) procured was for existing generation plant, compared to only 1.5% for new build generating capacity. In addition, the greatest proportion of this capacity is to be filled by one year contracts for existing gas powered combined cycle gas turbine plant (46%), with nuclear plant making the second greatest capacity awarded (16%). In light of these results, it is difficult to see how new build generating capacity could be competitive and therefore successful in future auctions of this type.

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Planning Implications of Changing Technology During the Construction Phase of a Project

by Jack Spurway

Aardvark senior consultant Jack Spurway considers planning implications of rapidly changing technology in the renewable energy sector during the construction phase of a project. It is a common occurr...

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