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Sita signs 30-year Merseyside contract

Sita UK has signed a 30-year contract worth more than £1bn with the Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority (MWDA) to convert waste to energy.

As part of the public-private partnership contract, Sita UK will build a £250m energy-from-waste (EfW) facility at the Wilton International industrial estate on Teesside.

The Green Investment Bank (GIB) has invested £20m in the project, which involves the EfW infrastructure and two rail interchanges.

The plant is expected to convert more than 420,000 tonnes of residual waste into energy per annum, producing energy for more than 60,000 homes each year.

The waste will come from around 1.5 million people within Halton Borough Council and the boroughs of the MWDA. It will then be taken to a rail-linked waste transfer station at Knowsley and transferred to the new plant at Wilton. 

David Palmer-Jones, chief executive officer of Sita UK said: “We expect to create around 75 permanent jobs and employ hundreds more during the construction process.”

Graham Morgan, MWDA chairperson, said: “The solution we have selected for Merseyside and Halton is the best for the environment - saving natural resources, generating green electricity and providing value for money for Merseyside and Halton council tax payers.”

In October 2014, Covanta Energy settled a lengthy dispute with the MWDA over the Merseyside contract. Covanta had entered a tender for the contract but a Sita-led consortium was selected as preferred bidder.

Covanta took legal action against the MWDA in June 2013 claiming that it had not been transparent in its tendering process, but Covanta agreed not to pursue its claims after reaching an “amicable settlement”.

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