Leeds City Council is advertising for tenders for its long-term waste treatment contract after the Government awarded £68.6 million in private finance initiative credits to deal with the citys household waste.
The council has not made a decision on preferred treatment technologies and is remaining neutral on possible solutions. Officers and councillors have been visiting various facilities across the country looking at alternative technologies, including energy-from-waste, mechanical biological treatment (MBT) and anaerobic digestion.
Executive board member for environmental services Steve Smith said: We are keeping an open mind about the type of technology that we might use to deal with the citys waste. New technologies are emerging and the solution has to be the one that protects the environment, delivers value for money and is acceptable to local residents.
We asked residents and interested groups about what is most important to them when making this decision and this consultation will influence how we ultimately decide which process is best.
Recycling remains a high priority for the council and we are committed to achieving a minimum of 50% of the citys household waste by 2020. We are looking for a new treatment facility to deal with Leedss non-recycled waste and significantly reduce the amount of waste currently sent to landfill, a major contributor to carbon emissions which have been linked to climate change.
The next stage of the waste treatment project will see the council advertising in the Official Journal of the European Union later this month, then to appoint a contractor by mid 2010 and to have the new facility operational in 2014.