Merton council is set to pioneer a green technology, which it claims will be more efficient than burning biomass.

The UK’s first small-scale pyrolysis plant be installed on a 227-unit housing scheme in south London. It will provide the Crest Nicholson scheme, designed by Sheppard Robson, with biomass-derived heat and power by heating organic matter in the absence of oxygen.

Adrian Hewitt, the principal environment officer, said this was a better solution than burning biomass, and added that connecting to the plant was a condition of planning consent.

Merton pioneered the so-called “Merton rule” where developers must generate at least 10% of a project’s energy needs from on-site renewables.