British waste management company Biffa has announced the commencement of full-scale operations at its Newhurst Energy Recovery Facility (ERF).

The facility is located in Shepshed in the county of Leicestershire, England, UK. It is jointly owned by Encyclis, a waste treatment and disposal company in the UK.

This milestone comes after the successful completion of a three-year-long construction and commissioning project.

Construction of the facility was managed by Encyclis with lead contractor Hitachi Zosen Inova (HZI).

The ERF is Encyclis’ second facility opened under its portfolio of six ‘Energy-from-Waste’ projects.

Encyclis CEO Owen Michaelson said: “The move into full commercial operations at Newhurst ERF is a credit to our teams, working with HZI to ensure completion as planned at the outset.

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“Construction started in 2020, when we were all in the grip of the pandemic, and to have achieved delivery on time despite all those headwinds is the result of a remarkable effort by everyone involved in the project.”

The new ERF plant is capable of processing nearly 350,000 tonnes of non-recyclable waste every year and could generate up to 42MW of sustainable baseload electricity.

The treatment process will allow the companies to recover residual ash and metals, which can be reused.

At the site, Encyclis has currently deployed 50 employees to ensure round-the-clock operations.

Biffa Resources & Energy COO Mick Davis said: “Biffa has a leading role to play in developing the recycling and energy-from-waste facilities that the UK needs if it is to become a low-carbon, resource-efficient economy.

“Energy recovery is a lower-carbon alternative to landfill for the treatment of waste that can’t be reduced or recycled and will have a vital role to play for many years as a contributor to the transition to net zero.

“Reaching this milestone at Newhurst, along with our ambitious investments in recycling, are vital steps in the delivery of our strategic investment plans.

“We look forward to working with our partners to further reduce the UK’s reliance on landfill or export for managing the country’s non-recyclable waste.”