Why do we need the NESS energy from waste facility?

Waste (Scotland) Regulations 2012

The Waste (Scotland) Regulations 2012 were introduced by the Scottish Government to change the way we as a nation view waste and to encourage reuse and recycling, leaving as little as possible to be disposed of. The regulations announced a ban on putting biodegradable waste to landfill, and this element of the legislation will come into force in 2021.

The Scottish Government advises the purpose of the ban is:

  • to reduce the volumes of waste being landfilled by directing unsorted waste to pretreatment.
  • to extract remaining resource value from the unsorted waste stream.
  • to protect the environment from the significant climate change impacts of landfilling biodegradable wastes.

The three councils are committed to recycling as much as they can with new recycling schemes and sorting facilities, either planned or implemented, with a further reduction of 20,000 tonnes diverted from landfill before the plant is operational. In 2016, Aberdeen City, Aberdeenshire and Moray Council together sent over 170,000 tonnes of waste to landfill. Despite the Councils best efforts to reduce residual waste through minimisation campaigns, recycling, composting and use of other treatments, a substantial quantity of residual waste that is generated will still need to be collected and cannot be landfilled anymore.

Energy from Waste

Business cases prepared separately by all three councils concluded that a joint Energy from Waste facility is the best option providing a local solution for waste disposal while generating electricity and heat to benefit the local community. The facility will align with Scotland’s vision of becoming a Zero Waste society. A shared project costs less and provides the best value for money for all three councils.

In 2017, Aberdeen City started to send its residual (non-recyclable) waste by boat to be burned in EfW plants in northern Europe. These plants charge Aberdeen City for this service then sell on the energy produced to their local communities. This solution is costly to the Council and unsustainable in the longer term.

This facility provides a local, long term, sustainable solution for managing waste that cannot be recycled; contributing to the local renewable energy market and feeding into a local district heating scheme.

Further details and explanation on the Waste (Scotland) Regulations can be found here; www.sepa.org.uk

Did you know?

The contractor chosen to operate the plant is required to provide community benefits.

 Waste Management

 

 Waste Management