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A new plastics-to-hydrogen park is likely to be established in Cheshire by Peel Environmental

Proposed Waste Plastics Plant Magnifies Manufacturers’ Insurance Needs

Mar 2020

A new plastics-to-hydrogen park is likely to be established in Cheshire by Peel Environmental, part of Peel L&P, with the £7m facility handling non-recyclable plastics and converting them into fuel. [1]

The facility, based in Ellesmere Port, would occupy a 2.5-acre site and comprise four main buildings, each with a particular purpose.  One would be a waste reception, a second a gasification plant and buildings three and four a storage and maintenance plant and amenity facility, respectively.

It is suggested that this plant could produce up to two tonnes of hydrogen per day, from every 35 tonnes of plastic, saving massive amounts of plastic waste from having to be consigned to landfill.

This innovative energy plant is a much larger version of many smaller enterprises working to reduce the impacts of plastic and put waste plastic to alternative uses.  What all such businesses have in common is the need to put the right insurances in place, according to the inherent risks within each enterprise.

Manufacturing risks come in many guises and ascertaining exactly which pertinent covers a business requires would typically necessitate several site visits and an audit by an experienced insurance broker.  A broker can note the processes, production line operations, storage of raw materials, equipment in use and other risks on-site and suggest insurance strategies to contain them.  They can also highlight the mandatory insurance covers required, as well as other insurance protection that will provide financial compensation when necessary.

The range of insurances required could vary from environmental liability to equipment breakdown.  With an energy plant, there is typically a terrorism risk to consider, as well as the more modern-day risk of cyber attack, which has the potential to bring a plant to a standstill, by disabling key connected equipment.

Energy and manufacturing plants also often present more risks for workers, so having a robust health and safety programme is key – another area with which an insurance broker can assist.  Where there is employee risk, there is also often litigation and blame, making legal expenses protection important, along with Directors & Officers insurance, which will protect an individual director or manager’s personal finances, should a case be brought against them for negligence with regard to safety and training procedures.

Setting up a plant is not just a case of bringing in equipment and recruiting employees but also entails making insurance protection the backbone of the enterprise. If you are establishing a new factory or production facility, whether based around plastics, energy or something else, look for a broker to assist with this by using our ‘Find a Local Broker’ tool.