A consortium including waste firm Shanks has been chosen as preferred bidder for a £560m project in Northern Ireland.
The North West Regional Waste Management Group (NWRWMG) has selected SBS Waste Partnership, which also includes waste firm Brickkiln and construction company Sisk, for the 25-year residual waste deal.
The consortium will manage up to 140,000 tonnes of residual waste per year via a Mechanical Biological Treatment (MBT) facility at Brickkiln’s Enviropark site in Maydown. It will produce Solid Recovered Fuel (SRF) for a gasification facility to generate sustainable energy.
Planning permission for the MBT facility has been approved and the project is now moving into the financing stage. The facility is expected to be operational in 2015.
NWRWMG includes seven councils in Northern Ireland which account for 200,000 tonnes of waste per year (see above): Ballymoney Borough Council, Coleraine Borough Council, Derry City Council, Limavady Borough Council, Magherafelt District Council, Moyle District Council and Strabane District Council.
NWRWMG joint committee chair Evelyne Robinson said the project was one of Northern Ireland’s largest ever procurements.
She added: “The technologies proposed, which already operate in towns and cities across Europe, will ensure that ratepayers avoid potential EU fines for failure to divert waste from landfill, and create 200 construction jobs and 40 full-time posts once operational.”
NWRWMG is one of three such partnerships in Northern Ireland. Environment minister Alex Attwood has called for one waste authority across the whole province, but legal and procurement rules may prevent this, MRW recently reported.
Northern Ireland has a target to recycle or compost 50% of its waste by 2020, and is currently consulting on raising the target to 60% by 2020.