Biomass power plant, Pécs, Hungary

<div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Description</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld"></td><td class="columns">PANNONPOWER Holding Zrt. started to build a power plant using biomass combustion technologies to produce energy in 2008 with the goal of making the town of Pécs independent from fossil fuels. The power plant plans to burn 240,000 tons of biomass (straw & soft-stem agricultural by-products) from the year of 2013 onwards. However, the quantity of biomass locally available for fuel is under debate. According the leaders of a local civil organisation, called Civils for Mecsek (CMM), the transport of biomass over long-distances (over 50 km) should not happen, as it theoretically turns green energy dirty. They argue therefore that the straw combustion power plant is not a green energy project. CMM is also worried about the negative impacts of the power plant on the agriculture of the region, as re-ploughing straw and agricultural residues in the soil is important to maintain the fertility of soil, as well as to prevent the drying of the soil in summer time. They also fear that a shortage of fuel could lead to local deforestation in search of feedstocks for fuel. Furthermore, the power plant has limited storage opportunities, therefore baling, transporting and storing of straw will mean a huge responsibility for farmers, and may take labour resources away from the main agricultural activities. The plant is currently in operation. <br/><br/></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Basic Data</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Name</td><td>Biomass power plant, Pécs, Hungary</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Country</td><td><a href="/country/hungary">Hungary</a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Site</td><td>Pécs</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Accuracy of Location</td><td>MEDIUM regional level</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Source of Conflict</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (1st level)</td><td>Biomass and Land Conflicts (Forests, Agriculture and Livestock Management)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (2nd level)</td><td>Pollution related to transport (spills, dust, emissions)<br /> Agro-fuels and biomass energy plants</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Specific Commodities</td><td>Wood, Energy Crops, Agricultural Residues, Straw<br /><a href='/commodity/biological-resources'>Biological resources</a></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Project Details and Actors</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Details</td><td class="columns"><div class="less">The Pecs power station has an installed capacity of 200 MW, of which 65 MW is uses biomass. </div><a class="seemore" href="#">See more...</a><div class="more" style="display:none"> Leaders of the power plant entrusted a market-research company to give an estimation for the available quantity of biomass in the area. According to the results, 7 million tons of straw, corn stover, and other agricultural by-products is accessible in the 100 kilometres surrounding of Pécs annually. 100 kilometres is the distance from where the biomass transport is still economical. In contrast, results of the Hungarian Central Statistical Office showed that this area can produce much less (2 million tons/year) agricultural by-products that would be usable by the power plant. The CMM refers to the results of the National Food Chain Safety Office that measured 700-800 thousand tons straw that accessible in a year. <br/><br/><a class="seeless" href="#">(See less)</a></div></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Level of Investment (in USD)</td><td>100000000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Population</td><td>Semi-urban</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Potential Affected Population</td><td>--</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Start Date</td><td>2011</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Company Names or State Enterprises</td><td><a href='/company/veolia-environnement'>Veolia North America</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/united-states-of-america'><small>United States of America </small></a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Relevant government actors</td><td>Local government of Pécs</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Environmental justice organisations and other supporters</td><td>Civilek a Mecsekért Mozgalom - CMM (Civils for the Mecsek)</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">The Conflict and the Mobilization</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)</td><td>LOW (some local organising)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">When did the mobilization begin</td><td>In REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Groups Mobilizing</td><td>Neighbours/citizens/communities<br /> Social movements</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Forms of Mobilization</td><td>Creation of alternative reports/knowledge<br /> Media based activism/alternative media<br /> Public campaigns<br /> Street protest/marches</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Impacts</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Environmental Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Noise pollution<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Food insecurity (crop damage), Soil erosion, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Groundwater pollution or depletion</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Health Impacts</td><td><strong>Potential: </strong>Occupational disease and accidents, Other environmental related diseases</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other</td><td>allergies</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Socio-economic Impacts</td><td><strong>Potential: </strong>Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Outcome</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Status</td><td>In operation</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Pathways for conflict outcome / response</td><td>Environmental improvements, rehabilitation/restoration of area<br /> Strengthening of participation</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Development of Alternatives</td><td>The CMM does not reject biomass power plants but rather favour an approach of small local scale appropriate power plants where the fuel does not need to be transported so far. </td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Do you consider this as a success?</td><td>No</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Why? Explain briefly.</td><td>The new biomass power plant is in operation.</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Sources and Materials</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">References</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Hungarian article about the negative impacts of the bimass power plant:<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://nol.hu/lap/mo/20120104-zolderomu_zoldfelelmekkel" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Brochure of the Pannonpower Holding Zrt. about the power plant (in hungarian):<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.pannonpower.hu/userfiles/szalmabr_kisfajl.pdf" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Web-page of the Civils for Mecsek: <br/><a class="refanch small" href="www.cmm.hu" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Web-page of the investor: <br/><a class="refanch small" href="www.pannonpower.hu" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Media Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Pics of the protest:<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.cmm.hu/?cat=kepnez&id=229&pos=3#pic3" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Pics of biomass forum:<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.cmm.hu/?cat=kep&id=238" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Meta Information</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Contributor</td><td>Malovics Gyorgy</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Last update</td><td>08/04/2014</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div>
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