Councils reach milestone in project to build major sustainable energy plant
The contract to build a state-of-the-art energy-from-waste plant for Edinburgh and Midlothian was signed today with environmental services company FCC Medio Ambiente SA.
Environment leaders from the City of Edinburgh and Midlothian Councils joined FCC on Thursday (6 October) to finalise the 25-year contract to build and operate the facility at Millerhill, Midlothian.
In December 2014 FCC was named as preferred bidder by the partnership Zero Waste: Edinburgh and Midlothian to design, construct, finance and operate the plant. This will be fuelled by waste collected by both councils that would otherwise go to landfill.
The Councils have been supported throughout the procurement by Scottish Futures Trust, a Scottish Government-appointed body, which has brought a wealth of knowledge and experience to Zero Waste.
Construction is set to begin imminently, with the plant expected to begin operation in 2018.
Councillor Lesley Hinds, Environment Convener for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “I am pleased that FCC will now be able to begin work on this state-of-the-art facility. In Edinburgh we have made great progress increasing the amount of waste we recycle. This new facility will provide a sustainable way of disposing of any waste that can’t be recycled by using it as an energy source for locally-generated heat and power.
“The procurement of this project is an example of successful partnership working between the two councils, and will benefit both Edinburgh and Midlothian’s zero waste strategies over the coming years.”
Councillor Jim Bryant, the Cabinet Member for Economic Development at Midlothian Council, said: “This is another exciting milestone in an innovative project that will turn a derelict, brownfield site into an energy production centre.
“This represents another sizeable infrastructure investment in the Shawfair area. In addition to increasing recycling rates, the plant will produce electricity for the National Grid.”
The contract to process up to 135,000 tonnes of mixed waste annually will provide a long-term, competitively priced solution for the recovery of value from the landfill waste collected by City of Edinburgh and Midlothian Councils.
It is hoped the project to treat both food and landfill waste on the site, creating renewable energy in the process, will help both authorities contribute to the national recycling target of 70% by 2025 and the national landfill diversion target of 95% by 2025.
A food waste treatment plant, which takes all of the food waste collected by the partner councils, is currently in operation on the Zero Waste Parc next to the Millerhill Marshalling Yard in Midlothian.
Find out more about the project on the Zero Waste website.