On-site works are continuing to progress well at Hartlebury Trading Estate, near Stourport, on EnviRecover, the new energy from waste (EfW) facility that is set to open in spring 2017.
The project to build the plant, which will be able to divert up to 200,000 tonnes of non-recyclable waste from landfill sites in Herefordshire and Worcestershire, has stepped up a gear with around 90 people now employed on site. Once operational, EnviRecover will have the ability to generate enough renewable electricity to power a town the size of Hereford.
At its peak it's anticipated that more than 300 people will be working to turn plans for the flagship facility into a reality.
Following final approvals to progress by Herefordshire Council and Worcestershire County Council in December 2013 its contractor, Mercia Waste Management, appointed Hitachi Zosen Inova (HZI), as the main Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contractor.
HZI has a global wealth of experience in energy from waste projects and is currently engaged in projects at different stages under construction in the UK. In turn, HZI appointed UK-based multi-discipline firm Interserve Plc. as its main subcontractor for the civil components of the plant.
Initial works began on-site in June and, to date, excavation works have almost all been completed. Foundation and retaining wall construction is currently taking place. This phase is expected to be completed early next year.
EnviRecover forms part of an integrated plan at reducing the amounts of waste being sent to landfill sites from across the two counties. In addition to the EfW facility, Mercia’s sister company, Severn Waste Services, operates EnviroSort, situated at Norton near Worcester, which helps recycle around 75,000 tonnes of material each year and thousands of residents take advantage of the numerous Household Recycling Centres across both counties.
The decision to press ahead with EnviRecover will bring great benefit for the environment as it will reduce the amount of waste currently heading to landfill and solve the problem of a fast decreasing landfill space. It will also have advantages for the taxpayer. When compared to the 'do nothing' scenario the EfW plant will save around £163million.
Senior councillors and officers from both authorities were given a tour of the site earlier this week.
Cllr Johnson Leader of Herefordshire Council said: “I’m very impressed by the work being carried out and looking forward to when the facility is open so that waste no longer has to be buried at a landfill site. What a great step forward to do something useful with it by creating enough electricity to power a city the size of Hereford.”
HZI’s site manager, Andy Bendall, said: "The overall programme is on schedule. We are maintaining very high standards of construction and developing a forward looking health and safety culture. The main earthworks and foundation piling are largely completed, and we expect to make a start on building construction early in the New Year.
Mercia Waste Management’s project director, David Silva, said: "We are pleased with the progress to date on what is a very complex project, and we are determined to see the plant delivered on time, in order to support the other elements of our waste management service contract to the councils."