Sustainable Supply Chain Solutions
Broad Fuels is a key supplier to the renewable energy market both here in the UK and throughout Europe in supplying sustainable feedstock services to biomass and energy from waste operators.
Our sustainable supply chain services team enable UK fuel producers to benefit from alternative routes for their products, often in new and developing markets, which would be too time consuming and expensive to realise themselves.
Our team's operational and technical experience enables us to manage and support the transition of customers' fuels production from RDF to higher specification fuels, including Solid Recovered Fuel (SRF).
This transition management opens new markets in other energy intensive industries such as the paper and pulp industry and cement manufacturing, which require a higher quality and more consistent product.
This offers significantly improved gate fees and the opportunity to develop secure and long-term off-take solutions businesses work to meet their emissions and sustainable energy targets.
Refuse Derived Fuel is produced via a range of technologies including Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) residues or Mechanical Biological Treatment (MBT), which ensures that recyclable materials are still recovered. The specification for RDF is comparatively wide and provides waste managers with a genuine landfill diversion solution for their customers' waste.
RDF presents a significant environmental benefit cutting the production of methane and other greenhouse gases. The production of RDF also presents a financial opportunity and the disposal MSW as an RDF - as opposed to landfill - can generally realise a cost saving somewhere in the region of 20%. A significant proportion of this comes from the avoidance of landfill tax, which is currently set at £84.40 per tonne.
Whilst RDF can be disposed of to any R1 rated Energy From Waste facility (EFW) the cost savings it presents coupled with the relatively broad specification means that the more traditional markets in the Netherlands and Germany are now showing signs of saturation.
Broad Fuels has developed a wide off-take network across the traditional and developing markets. The result is that whilst material is now travelling further to reach developing markets this is off set by lower gates fees driven by greater capacity. The net result is an extension of the RDF market, which continues to offer the same environmental benefits and a comparable cost saving compared to landfill.
Solid Recovered fuel is predominantly produced from Mechanical Biological Treatment and residues from Material Recycling Facilities (MRF). General waste is shredded and dried producing a homogenous material from which non-combustible materials can be removed. The result is a consistent mix of mainly non-recyclable paper, card, and plastic with a high calorific value.
In contrast to RDF, which is used predominantly in Energy from Waste facilities, SRF is used in a range of industrial processes. These include cement manufacturing, the paper and pulp industry, and district heating schemes that will either take SRF direct or further process RDF prior to use. As a result SRF, is manufactured to much more rigid specification than ‘traditional' RDF.
There is strong demand for high quality SRF that looks set to increase as energy intensive industries look to source low cost low carbon fuels as a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels. This coupled with tighter emissions controls on industry to meet their obligations under various climate change policies e.g. EU Emissions Trading Scheme.
SRF provides a genuine zero to landfill option for residual waste. When used on the manufacture of cement even the residue of ash after burning is used within the final product.
Through our Broad Fuels division we deliver a range of high quality wood chip fuel and wood pellet fuel to commercial and institutional wood heating customers throughout the UK.
As an independent fuels supplier, we ensure that we are able to secure, regionally sourced and quality assured wood fuel delivered direct to the customer.
We believe that wood fuel heating will continue to be a key form of renewable energy in the future, used increasingly to produce heat for UK organisations and businesses. This will also contribute to meeting climate change targets and reducing carbon in the atmosphere
We continue to successfully supply wood fuel to a range of companies and organisations including: private estates, Government organisations, local authorities, colleges, schools, district heating schemes, housing developers, architects and mechanical and electrical (M&E) engineers and consultants.
Broad Fuels provides a full range of pan-European logistics services and with over 30 years experience we have developed relationships with some of Europe’s largest transport logistics providers enabling us to deliver a end-to-end compliant logistics service.
This established network enables us to provide our customers with a high degree of flexibility and capacity in the services we offer.
Our wide range of logistics partners enables us to offer our clients with a diverse range of transport options which includes:
- Bulk Tippers
- Walking Floors
- Curtain Siders
All our approved hauliers undertake a strict compliance audit and all vehicles are equipped with GPS tracking systems.
We are continually developing new and innovative shipping solutions, which utilise different routes, vessels and equipment to provide a range of cost effective export solutions.
The Growth in the RDF / SRF export market means we are now starting to see a reduction in negative leg capacity (when a vessel returns having delivered cargo) on traditional routes.
Our shipping experts have developed a number of additional routes, which utilise alternative equipment and vessel types e.g. side-port. This enables us to open up new routes and ports and provide our clients with both choice and efficiency.
Our ability to optimise transport routes enables us to control costs. The result is that fuels are able to travel further opening up new off-takers with more capacity and competitive gate fees. Innovations such as our loose load service also provide the opportunity for smaller scale producers to realise the benefits of the international export market.
Our asset tracking service provides our customers with full traceability of every bale from production to disposal. In addition to the confidence and improved management information this provides, it also supports door-to-door movements and enables us to consolidate small loads.
We have developed excellent working relationships with a number of UK ports and work closely with clients, vessel owners and port operators.We provide a fully managed port service for clients, which includes the provision and management of all logistics services, material storage, stevedoring and operation of loading equipment. We also liaise with port authorities, customs and crew, provide security, ensure compliance with port regulations and complete all required paperwork.
We recognise the importance of material quality and are committed to ensuring that all the fuel that leaves our customers’ production facilities arrives safely and in good condition at the appropriate disposal facility. As a result we offer a bale overwrapping service at all our UK ports.
This minimises the possibility of damage in transport and preserve the quality of the product.
Broad Group and R K Harrison have developed a new insurance product to support developers and operators of bioenergy plants by providing insurance against lost income arising from previously uninsurable failures within the feedstock supply chain. According to research commissioned by the Department for Energy and Climate Change, by 2020 this supply chain will have grown to include 42 million tonnes of feedstock.
If a feedstock supply chain fails, a plant has to seek alternative inputs to remain operational, potentially on the spot market, depending on timing, which can compromise its capacity to service debt or generate profits. Despite these potentially costly financial implications, traditional business interruption insurance, which covers loss of income as a result of physical damage, does not cover many of the risks a renewable energy supply chain faces.
“Working with developers, funders and users it is very clear that, in many cases, the perception of feedstock supply chain risk has been holding back expansion and, more concerning for the industry as whole, the development of new energy from waste plants.”
The full supply chain insurance service incorporates insurance and risk management advice in a three phased approach:
- A comprehensive supply chain audit, including a full risk assessment and critique of the long term management strategy.
- Where necessary, a risk mitigation programme that protects profits, balance sheet, brand and company reputation against the significant implications of supply chain disruption;
- Insurance with wider coverage than traditional business interruption policies.
This insurance differs from traditional business interruption insurance as it designed to indemnify the operator for any reduction in turnover as a result of an interruption or failure in the supply chain. This means it is not reliant on an event or damage as a trigger to the reduction and can include such risks as a supplier’s insolvency or inability to provide sufficient feedstock, political risks or extreme weather events, which are all excluded under traditional insurance.