New Earth Solutions Group has been granted planning permission to develop its energy recovery capability at its Canford waste facility near Poole in Dorset.
The company, which already operates a mechanical biological treatment (MBT) facility on the site, plans to build a 10MW Energy Recovery Facility (ERF). This is enough to meet the needs of around 20,000 homes. The renewable energy plant will be powered by refuse-derived fuel (RDF) created from residual waste which cannot be recycled.
Primarily treating domestic “black bag” waste, the Canford MBT offers second-chance recycling for metals and plastics, composts the fine, biodegradable fraction and turns the remaining waste into RDF. This is currently transported off-site to the continent for use in a combined heat and power facility. The new renewable energy plant at Canford would reduce the need to export RDF and instead use it on-site as a resource to create renewable electricity.
Over 800,000 tonnes of RDF was exported to other European countries by waste management companies in the UK and Ireland during 2012. Utilising this fuel in-country can not only reduce costs but also assist the UK in meeting its target for production of energy from renewable sources set by the European Commission – 15% by 2020.
The Canford ERF will utilise New Earth’s patented ‘NEAT’ (New Earth Advanced Thermal) technology. This technology is the basis of the company’s Avonmouth ERF near Bristol, the first of its kind in the UK. The commercial-scale plant in Avonmouth began exporting power to the grid in May this year.
New Earth’s Managing Director Darren Stockley explains the strategy: “By producing RDF from the waste which can’t be recycled we have successfully diverted more away from landfill. Now we need to make sure we are making the most of that RDF and have sufficient energy recovery capacity for its use within the UK. By closing this loop, New Earth is increasing the environmental value that can be recovered from all the waste it treats. Following the successful commissioning of our 13MW ERF in Avonmouth, we can now begin to roll the NEAT technology out to other facilities around the UK.”
New Earth expects to begin construction of the ERF at Canford in 2014 enabling operations to begin in 2015.