arc21, Belfast

The proposed £240 million facility is being developed by the Becon Consortium of which Indaver is the lead party.  The design, build and operate contract for this municipal waste facility is being procured by arc21, the waste management group which represents six Councils in the eastern region of Northern Ireland and 60% of the population. The project consists of a Mechanical Biological Treatment building, a 220,000 tonnes per annum Energy from Waste (EfW) plant and a visitor centre.  The facility will be located at the Hightown Quarry on the Boghill Road, Mallusk, Co. Antrim.  

The  proposed development was refused planning in 2023 by the Minister for Infrastructure.  This was contrary to the planning officials recommendation to approve, the forth such recommendation.  That decision is currently being judicially reviewed. 

The project represents a major investment for Northern Ireland – approximately £240 million in development and construction alone. It will create 455 construction jobs at peak and support around 340 permanent, direct and indirect jobs when the plants are operational.’

The proposed facility will also contribute to the transition to a circular economy by treating it as a valuable resource, thereby removing the need for landfill and the export of residual waste that is unsuitable for reuse of recycling. It will also assist in meeting Northern Ireland’s targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and generate electricity from renewable sources.  

The proposed development is underpinned by policy as outlined by Government and the relevant statutory bodies, including:

  • arc21’s waste management plan
  • The Strategic Planning Policy Statement
  • Delivering resource efficiency
  • The Mills report
  • NI Industrial Strategy Economy 2030

For more information about the project, see