Greenhill Energy will use wood waste as fuel after Monarto sawmill deal

Wood waste from a new sawmill at Monarto will help fuel a hydrogen plant at Tailem Bend. Photo: Supplied by Greenhill Energy.

If you can turn something valueless into something valuable, you’re on a winner, both financially and environmentally.

That’s what Greenhill Energy hopes to do at its proposed gas and fertiliser plant at Tailem Bend, and that vision got one step closer to reality this week.

The start-up has reached a deal with wood processing firm KSI Sawmills to take waste from a new sawmill at Monarto and use it as fuel for the Riverbend Energy Hub.

The Tailem Bend facility will be able to use any kind of biomass – organic material – to produce hydrogen gas, which can be used to generate electricity, plus byproducts including urea fertiliser.

Managing director Nicholas Mumford said the fact that KSI’s timber came from sustainable plantations, rather than native forest, matched Greenhill Energy’s aspirations to produce “clean” hydrogen.

“The timber residues … will be another ideal and consistent source of sustainable biomass for our manufacturing plant, and will provide security as we grow,” he said.

Greenhill Energy had already signed similar supply deals with partners including Peats Soil and Garden Supplies and Solo Resource Recovery.

These logs might be used in construction or for another purpose, and now any offcuts can be used to make hydrogen gas and electricity. Photo: Supplied by Greenhill Energy.

KSI Sawmills managing director Victor Kyriakou said his company was excited to work with another Murraylands company with a focus on sustainability.

“Greenhill Energy’s Riverbend Energy Hub shares the same commitment to the environment as we do,” he said.

“The potential to have offcuts and timber residue be upcycled to assist in the production of green hydrogen is a pleasing result for our business.”

Ben Fee, chief executive of Regional Development Australia Murraylands and Riverland, said the deal was a perfect example of the benefits that came from local collaboration.

“We’re attracting some great new companies to this vibrant region, and this new partnership offers great circular economy opportunities with significant social and environmental benefits,” he said.

Source: Greenhill Energy will use wood waste as fuel after Monarto sawmill deal