UK's Argent Energy wins awards for waste-based biodiesel supply

By Argent Energy | September 21, 2016

Argent Energy, one of the U.K.’s leading suppliers of sustainable biodiesel, has won two awards at the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership (LowCVP) Low Carbon Champions Awards 2016: the Low Carbon Fuel Initiative of the Year Award and the highest accolade, the Grand Prix, or Winner of Winners, Award.

Argent Energy manufactures 60 million litres (15.85 million gallons) of biodiesel from waste each year. In 2015 Argent supplied high bio‐blend diesel to two major London bus companies. The initiative has stimulated more supply and demand in London and after a year of using this carbon-saving diesel, the greenhouse gas (GHG) emission savings for these companies would be equivalent to 150 million miles of carbon-free travel, based on DfT figures.

Argent only uses wastes for biodiesel and is the most sustainable producer in the U.K. The company has introduced high GHG-saving fuel into London in support of its challenging climate change targets. Argent captured the potential of biodiesel from waste as a drop-in replacement fuel without the need for vehicle modification. The fuel is priced around the same level as standard diesel, and sometimes cheaper.

Argent is not only working with the GLA and Transport for London to reach their target of B20 (high bio-blend diesel) in all London diesel buses by 2020, but has engaged with other U.K. cities. The company is also supplying more than 5,000 vehicles U.K.-wide with its waste-derived diesel and has demonstrated its commitment to helping transport companies to save carbon by investing in a new £75 million (USD$97.4 million) biodiesel plant in North West England due for completion at the end of the year.

The judges for the LowCVP Low Carbon Champions Awards said, “Argent Energy has put a great deal of effort into sourcing waste feedstocks and providing a public service turning waste into low carbon energy. The judges were impressed by the success that Argent Energy has achieved in the marketplace across some key applications.”

The LowCVP announced the 2016 Low Carbon Champions on Sept. 14 at the industry’s leading networking dinner, held in association with Cenex and LCV2016, in Milton Keynes. The Champions Awards celebrate achievement and innovation in low carbon road transport.

The celebration was hosted by Formula E TV presenter and science communicator, Nicki Shields, who was Master of Ceremonies at the event which took place at the Double Tree by Hilton, MK Dons Stadium.

The LowCVP Managing Director Andy Eastlake said about the Awards, “All the entries short-listed for the Champions Awards deserve recognition for the contribution they are making to cutting carbon emissions from road transport. There is a lot of work still to be done to achieve the objectives set under the Climate Change Act, but the dynamism and determination shown by so many of those involved today shows that there exists the drive and potential to achieve them.”

The Champions Awards judging panel was comprised of 22 senior executives from across the range of organizations with a stake in the low carbon road transport agenda.

The Grand Prix Award for Outstanding Achievement in Low Carbon Transport, sponsored by Millbrook, had a joint winner as well as Argent, which was H2 Aberdeen.

Robert Evans, Chief Executive of Cenex, said, “We are pleased to be able to host the LowCVP Low Carbon Champions Awards as part of the Cenex-LCV2016 networking dinner. The LCV2016 event brings the low carbon vehicle community together for two days of technology showcasing and networking, with the evening dinner extending this valuable networking time.  As an awards judge I commend all those nominated for an Award and congratulate the winners.”

Argent Energy is a leading waste-to-energy biodiesel producer in the U.K. Argent’s plant, near Motherwell in Scotland, started production in 2005 and represents an initial capital investment of around £17 million. This was supported by grants from the Scottish Executive and the European Union. The plant demonstrated the successful use of waste animal fats for biodiesel and has more recently been successfully pioneering the use of other waste streams such as fats, oils and greases from the waste-water and sewer systems.

As a result, Argent is investing £75 million in a new biodiesel plant that will increase its total production to around 150 million liters per year of waste-based fuel. Further investments in blending and distribution mean the business is able to supply high bio-blend diesel across the U.K. to fleet operators who want to reduce their carbon emissions.

Argent has always been privately owned. The business was established in 2001 and acquired by John Swire & Sons (Green Investments) Ltd (a wholly-owned subsidiary of John Swire & Sons Ltd) in 2013 to become part of the Swire Group.


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