Support for a proposed for a second energy from waste (EfW) site at Trumps Farm, Longcross has come from Surrey County Councils executive. The facility would complement existing waste reduction schemes in the county to divert waste from landfill.
The decision came despite ongoing campaigns objecting to the countys first EfW plant at Capel. Now the full council will hear proposals for the second site.
Other landfill reduction methods have been implemented by the council including investment in community recycling centres and the There are 3Rs in Surrey campaign, which encourages people to reduce, reuse and recycle.
But in spite of these schemes, and ambitious targets to improve recycling rates from 35% to 50% by 2020 and to 60% by 2025, a large amount of residual waste still needs to be diverted from landfill to avoid landfill tax penalties.
Of the 600,000 tonnes of household waste Surrey currently put into landfill each year, the executive decided that 270,000 tonnes of it should be processed by county EfW facilities.
The countys first plant at Capel, which is going through the planning process, only has 110,000 tonnes a year capacity. So, the proposed Longcross plant would take the remaining 160,000 tonnes. It will be procured as part of the Private Finance Initiative contract with Surrey Waste Management.
According to the council executive, the Longcross site is the most appropriate, although the planning application is yet to be submitted.
Council executive member for the environment Peter Martin said: We intend to dispose of as little waste as possible through EfW. Our aim is to concentrate on encouraging people to reduce the amount of waste they create, reuse as much as possible and recycle everything else where they can. However, realistically there will still be waste for us to dispose of after we have been through this process. EfW is a proven and sound technology which we can use to reduce the amount of waste we put into landfill.