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Peel shrinks EfW plan due to ‘market conditions’

Protos site plan

Peel Environmental has shrunk its plan for an energy-from-waste (EfW) facility in the north-west of England.

Its original proposal for a 95MW facility was granted approval in 2009 but the company has now reduced this to 35MW due to “market conditions”.

There is no contract in place with a local authority or business to provide the plant’s 350,000 tonnes a year feedstock, but the company said “options are being explored” in the region and it could process either household or trade waste.

The company plans to submit a planning application for the facility in the coming months, with construction expected to start in 2017.

A company spokesperson said: “It has been reduced in size simply to reflect current market conditions: 95MW was a very large facility and the smaller option is based on the expected market in the region.”

It will be built on a 126-acre development site called Protos, previously called Ince Resource Recovery Park, with work to construct a 20MW biomass facility and enabling infrastructure already underway.

Peel is working with Covanta, which continues to hold an interest in the EfW plot at Protos with a view to securing a renewed partnership for delivery of the project.

More than 300 jobs are expected to be created during construction and up to 40 permanent positions once the facility is operational, with the wider Protos scheme set to deliver around 3,000 jobs.

The site recently became part of the Cheshire Science Corridor Enterprise Zone, which will offer incentives such as business rates support and enhanced capital allowances to encourage further investment.

Peel’s Protos development director Jane Gaston said: “In addition to £170m announced at our start on-site, this deal represents further significant investment into the northern economy.

“Protos will become an energetic environment where innovative businesses can sit alongside renowned research facilities and industry. Having this energy facility, and the biomass facility under construction, as anchor developments is a real boost for this approach.”

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