Aiaxis - Protecta-Line the safe choice for energy plant
November 2021

Sector: Contaminated Land
Product: Protecta-Line
Client: Teeside
Contractor: Thermofuse Pipelines

A new £160m renewable energy plant on Teeside has turned to our Protecta-Line barrier pipe for the safe transportation of water on the site.

Port Clarence Renewable Energy Plant will provide 40MW of energy through the combustion of waste wood, generating electricity for the equivalent of 75,000 homes across the Tees Valley and wider North East region. The new plant will have the capacity to process 325,000 tonnes of waste wood per year from construction, demolition and civic amenity sites.

The power station is being constructed on the Clarence Works site, which has a long history of heavy industry and port related works. Although the land has been derelict for many years, its previous use was a steel production site and workshop, with its long and complex industrial history also including chemical manufacturing, iron works and oil and gas refining and storage.

Preliminary risk assessments of the site found elevated levels of soil and groundwater contamination. As a result, careful consideration needed to be given to the pipework system installed to cater for potable water applications to ensure there is no risk of the water supply becoming contaminated.

Following further site investigations, the developer stipulated that a barrier pipe must be used for the potable water supply and tasked Thermofuse Pipelines with sourcing and installing a safe and reliable solution. Looking for a product that has a proven track record in transporting water through contaminated land, Thermofuse Pipelines turned to our Protecta-Line barrier pipe system.

As part of the construction project, 700 metres of 63mm Protecta-Line has been installed to transport potable water from the boundary to the office building to ensure safe drinking water is supplied to the personnel working on site in the offices.

Barrier pipe has also been installed to serve the fire hydrant ring main, with 1,200 metres of 160mm Protecta-Line conveying water from the boundary to the ring main that runs around the site for fire protection. As the fire hydrant ring main will not be used frequently, it is vital that the required flow levels are available when called upon and any contamination of the water could attack the pipe and cause damage, which would restrict the flow of water in the event of a fire. Protecta-Line not only ensures that the water remains clean, but the smooth bore of the internal PE pipe also resists corrosion and limescale build-up, offering further reassurance that flow levels will be maintained over the lifetime of the system.

Due to the land being derelict and currently unused, there were no restrictions on the installation technique used, with the Protecta-Line laid using open cut methods, with a combination of butt fusion and electrofusion joints ensuring that the system is securely jointed.

Commenting on the project, Paul Hurst from Thermofuse Pipelines said: “Due to the confirmed elevated levels of contamination on this site, we needed to be confident we were installing a barrier pipe system that would reliably transfer safe drinking water, without any risk of permeation. With a proven track record of successful installations in similar applications, Protecta-Line was the ideal choice.

“The performance benefits of Protecta-Line were clear to us but it was the service we received from GPS that was the deciding factor. From the initial enquiry through to delivery, we received fantastic support to ensure we ordered the correct pipe, which was then delivered to site quickly and efficiently.”

Available in sizes up to 630mm, Protecta-Line is a fully approved integrated barrier pipe and fittings system. Its tough multi-layer construction incorporates an impermeable aluminium barrier layer wrapped onto a central core of PE80 or Excel (PE100) pipe to ensure that any contaminants remaining in brownfield sites and former industrial land cannot permeate into the water supply. The original barrier pipe system, Protecta-Line has been trusted by water companies, contractors and installers for more than 20 years.