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Sita consortium chosen as preferred bidder for South Tyne and Wear waste PFI

South Tyne and Wear Waste Partnership has chosen a Sita consortium as its preferred bidder for its waste private finance initiative (PFI).

Made up of Sita UK, the Royal Bank of Scotland and Catalyst Lend Lease, the consortium has won the 25-year contract to build and operate an energy-from-waste (EfW) facility, which will treat around 190,000 tonnes of waste a year. Three associated waste transfer stations will also be built in the Partnership area, while the EfW facility will be situated in Teesside.

South Tyne and Wear Waste Partnership, comprising Gateshead, South Tyneside and Sunderland councils, made the decision to award the consortium preferred bidder status while United Utilities lost out.

John Robinson, group director of local environmental services who heads the Partnership said: “We are very pleased to have reached this important milestone in our quest to provide an effective, much more sustainable, alternative to landfill. We have been extremely impressed with the quality of the proposals put forward by our two final bidders, SITA UK and United Utilities. I’d like to thank both companies for their efforts to date.

“There is still work to do with theSITA consortium because we aim to reach financial close before the end of the year. We are looking forward to a fruitful partnership that will allow us to significantly reduce our reliance on landfill and provide our residents with a greener waste management service.”

The plans are part of the Partnership’s £1.6bn proposals to create more sustainable ways of managing waste in the areas. It is aiming to increase the recycling rate across the three councils from 30% to 50% by 2020. To meet this target, a new kerbside recycling scheme is being introduced, replacing boxes with wheelie bins, which holds more material.

The Partnership secured £73.5m of PFI credits from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in July 2008 for the EfW facility.

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