New deal will see North Lanarkshire rubbish help to power national grid

General household waste sent to Viridor's new facility at Dunbar is expected to power 39,000 houses a year, previously it would just have been sent to landfill
General household waste sent to Viridor's new facility at Dunbar is expected to power 39,000 houses a year, previously it would just have been sent to landfill

More than 80 per cent of general household waste will be converted into energy in a new contract between North Lanarkshire Council and Viridor Waste Management.

The contract will see 64,000 tonnes of waste from homes and household waste recycling centres treated every year.

This material, which would previously have gone to landfill, will be treated at Viridor’s new Energy Recovery Facility in Dunbar, where it is converted into energy.

In December 2019, North Lanarkshire Council and four other Scottish local authorities will begin a 25-year partnership with Viridor to treat and process their residual waste at Dunbar, through the Clyde Valley Residual Waste Contract.

The waste received from North Lanarkshire over the next few months will help commission and optimise the new facility.

Andrew McPherson, head of the council’s Regulatory Services and Waste Solutions, said: “This is a major step forward for the council in diverting the majority of our household waste from landfill.

“Our residents are helping us to recycle more plastic, paper, metal and glass through our kerbside service, but previously the rubbish from general waste bins went to landfill which is expensive and bad for the environment.

“Now, more than 80 per cent of that general waste will be converted into energy which feeds directly into the national grid to power homes and businesses.

“Through the Clyde Valley Residual Waste Contract with Viridor, we are securing long-term financial and environmental benefits in North Lanarkshire and other partner areas.”

Viridor’s £177million facility at Dunbar will generate 30MW of low carbon energy every year into the national grid – enough to continuously power 39,000 homes.

Viridor’s head of Local Authority Contracts Scotland, Steven Don, said: “Recycling and energy recovery are both crucial and equally important components of Scotland’s waste and resource management systems.

“It’s important to achieve a responsible and resource-efficient way to deal with the materials that businesses and householders throw away.”