Environmental drilling company relocates to Wales

| Global Environmental Processes

Denbighshire is the new home for Dragon Drilling, where it will carry out its borehole and green energy sourcing operations.

Dragon Drilling, a sustainable resource utilisation company, is now the largest environmental drilling company in the UK after relocating its North Wales site.

Dragon Drilling moved from its Ruthin site to a 3-acre site at Bryn Saith Marchog, located between Ruthin and Corwen, creating additional jobs.

The firm provides drilling services for water boreholes, ground source heating and power generation from methane generated in landfill sites, turning potentially damaging greenhouse gas into green energy. Methane is generated in landfill sites by bacteria which feed on organic material and is around 24 times more damaging than carbon dioxide.

By drilling boreholes for extraction, Dragon Drilling allows site operators not only to control the escape of the methane but also to enable it to be used productively as a renewable energy source.

Geoff Ellison, chairman of Dragon Drilling, said: “We now operate more drilling rigs in the landfill sector than all of the other drilling companies combined. I anticipate that we should install around 3,500 boreholes this year which is good for us and the environment.

“This expansion has allowed us to create more skilled jobs in the county, continuing a strong trend of job creation. It will also allow us to embark on continued planned growth. We can continue to invest in plant and equipment, employ more staff and maintain our core strategy of sustainable utilisation of resources.”

The firm’s drilling fleet now comprises of 11 drilling rigs and the expansion will create four jobs at the company which has seen the workforce double to 36 since 2013.

Dragon Drilling has worked closely with Denbighshire County Council which provided planning guidance on the firm’s relocation, while the Council’s Public Protection Team provide them with assistance regarding drilling boreholes for water supply.

Mr Ellison said: “The support we have received from the Council has been pragmatic and helpful. Working closely with the Council has helped us expand our business and offered us the confidence to know that we are doing everything in the correct manner. Having such a good relationship with Denbighshire is good for business.

“Denbighshire is a great place to do business. We have found that there are many other businesses in the county which are vital for our activities. There are fabricators and equipment suppliers in particular which make this area an ideal part of the country to be based. Denbighshire may be classed as ‘rural’ but there is an infrastructure of other companies which assist with our activities.

“Clearly there is a great work/life balance as Denbighshire is a great place to live. As we work throughout the UK we could be based anywhere. Denbighshire is in the middle of the UK and has very good road links.”

Cllr Hugh Evans, leader of Denbighshire County Council, said: “We see this approach to working with businesses as being part of our Better Business for All project and our work to support businesses through our regulatory responsibilities.

“Dragon Drilling is a fantastic company and it is great to see this expansion which is helping to create highly skilled, well-paid jobs.

“As a county we are very much ‘open for business’ and supporting companies like Dragon Drilling is part of our work to develop the local economy to create higher paid jobs to increase household incomes.”

Long-term contracts have been awarded to Dragon Drilling this year in an industry which generates sufficient electricity to power 160,000 homes, equivalent to a city the size of Cardiff.

The company’s business strategy and operation was recognised last year when the North Wales Economic Ambition Board awarded it ‘Business of the Year.’

Mr Ellison added: “The Government has committed to being carbon neutral by 2050, ground source heating is set to continue to grow as part of the sustainable renewable market in the UK. We are investing to ensure we can help that market expand. We will continue as the market leader for the generation of energy from potentially damaging methane in landfill sites along with the provision of water boreholes.”

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