Construction starts on £10 million Somerset food waste plant
- 11 April 2012
- Company & Industry News
Recycling and waste company Viridor has started construction on a state-of-the-art food waste recycling facility near Bridgwater – its first in the South West.
The £10million plant located on Viridor's Walpole landfill site near Bridgwater will be able to process up to 30,000 tonnes of food waste each year. The by-product will be 1 megawatt of electricity, enough to supply more than 1,700 homes - or the nearby village of Puriton two times over.
Patrick Murray, Viridor's Regional Manger overseeing the project, said: "This is a fantastic development for Somerset that will help divert even more waste from landfill and increase recycling rates.
"Working with Somerset Waste Partnership we will process 20,000 tonnes of food waste collected from residents across the county. The remaining capacity will be filled from food waste we collect from local businesses.
"The plant will also provide some excellent employment opportunities with 20 jobs during the construction phase and six full-time positions when the plant starts operating in April 2013."
Somerset Waste Board chair Cllr Derek Yeomans said: "Somerset residents are working hard with us to maximise the weekly food collections and keep this valuable resource out of landfill. The next step, working with our partner Viridor, is to create clean, green renewable power right here in Somerset for the local grid.
"The new AD facility will also save taxpayers around £1million over the next five years so it's a genuine win on both environmental and economic grounds. We'd like to encourage all residents to use the scheme if they are not already, as the more we can process the bigger the benefits."
Anaerobic Digestion facilities mix organic material with water to make a slurry. Biogas from the process is then cleaned and sent to a Combined Heat and Power plant to produce green electricity and heat. The electricity is fed into the National Grid and remaining digestate material can be used as a soil conditioner.