180 green jobs at new Mayo bio-processing facility

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BioSpark - a newly-formed joint venture between Imperative Energy and Sustainable BioPolymers - has announced its intention to invest €40 million in the development of a next generation bio-processing research, innovation and manufacturing centre in Claremorris, County Mayo. Biospark says the venture will create 180 jobs initially, and could create up to 300 jobs in total over the next three years.

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Pictured at the announcement of the BioSpark development in Claremorris on 15th May 2009 are (l-r): Dr. Patrick Walsh, Sustainable BioPolymers Ltd; Mossie Ryan, Green Belt Ltd; JP Prendergast, Sustainable BioPolymers Ltd; Mary Coughlan TD, Tanaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade & Employment; Joe O’Carroll, Imperative Energy Ltd; John O’Reilly, Green Belt Ltd; Peter Doyle, Imperative Energy Ltd.


BioSpark - a newly-formed joint venture between Imperative Energy and Sustainable BioPolymers - has announced its intention to invest €40 million in the development of a next generation bio-processing research, innovation and manufacturing centre in Claremorris, County Mayo. Biospark says the venture will create 180 jobs initially, and could create up to 300 jobs in total over the next three years.

 The BioSpark development, to be located at a 22-acre site close to Claremorris, will incorporate the following elements: 

  • 20,000 tonne per annum bio-processing facility, utilising next generation technologies and techniques for the conversion of organic material such as straw and wood biomass into multiple high bio-based products such as ethanol, lactic acid, lignin, methane and hydrogen
  • Laboratory facilities for bio-processing research
  • 60,000 tonne per annum wood pellet production facility
  • 20MWth/5MWe combined heat and power plant which will be fired on biomass and connected to the national grid
  • 17 commercial units to house a cluster of related business ventures

"The co-location of all of these elements is specifically designed to extract the maximum value from locally produced biomass in a model that is completely sustainable from both an environmental and an economic point of view," the company said.

Making the announcement, Tánaiste Mary Coughlan added: "The impact of 180 high level jobs in County Mayo cannot be over emphasised.  Certainly the construction jobs during the building phase will be a boost to the local economy; however, it is the sustainable jobs of the ultimate workforce that will be a real driver to the local and regional economy.”

“The BioSpark project is not just impressive at a County Mayo level, this is a project that will impress on an international scale and sends a strong message that the conditions are right for new businesses to setup in Ireland.  Bioprocessing has been talked about for some time but this is the first real manifestation of a commercial scale facility with such a strong focus on innovation and R&D”, the Tánaiste added.

The total development will cost €40m and will be constructed over the next two years, subject to planning approval. 120 jobs will be created during the construction phase, with an initial 80 full-time positions available post-construction and an estimated 100 jobs 'upstream' in harvesting, transportation and supply chain management.

Last modified on Tuesday, 02 June 2009 17:46

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