Bluestone Resorts Ltd- Bluestone biomass partnership with PBE/PBESCO

Dairy Crest Rural Action Example of Excellence 2011 and Reaccredited Big Tick 2012

Bluestone National Park is a five-star short-break destination whose decision to invest in locally sourced renewable biomass fuel has had significant business, environmental and community benefits.

Business impacts

  • Biomass is cheaper than oil and therefore helps towards Bluestone’s profitability.
  • 92% employees said they were proud to work for Bluestone.
  • Development of Bluestone's brand as a sustainable tourism destination.

Social and environmental impacts

  • 3000 carbon dioxide emissions avoided each year by using renewable, carbon neutral biomass.
  • Opportunity for local farmers to diversify and secure a regular income with no need for capital investment in new machinery.
  • 400 jobs provided by Bluestone in the local area with another 700 expected when the remaining phases are completed injecting circa £30milllion into the Pembrokeshire economy every year.

“A wonderful example of sustainable business.”

- Jane Davidson, Welsh Assembly Government’s Minister for Sustainability

Bluestone is believed to be the first in the world heated exclusively by energy crops grown by local farmers co-operative. It spends over £50,000 a month on biomass, far less then it would spend on the equivalent amount of oil. The investment also aids the local economy and has measurable environmental benefits saving 3000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.

The Story

Bluestone’s founder was originally a dairy farmer before diversifying into tourism in the mid-1980s and wanted to meet energy demands in an environmentally friendly way while supporting the Pembrokeshire farming community in one fell swoop.

Research into trial crops and heating systems led to the development of the biggest biomass system in Wales. In order to meet demand, PBE Bio-Energy was set up as a co-operative of 14 local farmers growing miscanthus and willow. The system has become a valuable diversification opportunity for the farmers.

Bluestone opened in June 2008. Every month since then, around £50,000 a month has been spent on purchasing heat from PBE. By using locally-sourced biomass instead of oil it not only keeps money in the local economy but also frees Bluestone from endlessly rising oil prices and saves the emission of 3000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.