Full steam ahead to a circular economy

To keep the world habitable, we will have to close as many materials loops as possible. Waste therefore plays a fundamental role in the circular economy. By recovering materials and energy from waste streams and re-using them as raw materials, we create value from waste. At the same time, we need to be keeping hazardous components out of the materials and food chain to keep society and the environment clean and safe.

Illustrative examples of putting the circular economy into practice are Indaver’s investments in waste-to-energy installations, both in Ireland and the UK as well as the European mainland. Both the £600 million facility in Rivenhall, Essex, England, the NESS Project in Aberdeen, Scotland and E-wood in Belgium prove it is possible to put the circular economy into practice.

Residual waste becomes affordable, clean, local energy

In 2022, Indaver began the construction of an Integrated Waste Management Facility (IWMF) in Rivenhall, for the treatment of 595,000 tonnes of non-recyclable household and commercial waste. The facility has a capacity of 49.9 MWe. This will be enough to supply the power needs of approximately 60,000 households, equivalent to a town the size of Braintree in Essex or Cork city. The project will create 65 full time jobs locally and over 500 jobs during construction which will contribute greatly to the local economy. Rivenhall will be Indaver’s first waste-to-energy facility in England. It is expected to be fully operational by the end of 2025.

Keep investing in sustainable energy despite Brexit

In addition, from 2023 onwards, with the NESS Energy Project in Aberdeen, Indaver will run a waste-to-energy plant that will provide a solution for around 150,000 tonnes of household waste from a few municipalities in north-east Scotland to generate electricity. Indaver was chosen to operate the facility for a 20 year period thanks to its expertise in the waste-to-energy field. This plant will take non-recyclable waste from Aberdeen City, Aberdeenshire, and Moray Councils and treat it cleanly and completely conforming to the latest strict European standards for emissions.

Keep the material chain, society and environment clean and safe

On the Indaver site in the larger Antwerp port area in Belgium, Veolia (previously Suez) and Indaver are building an innovative waste-to-energy facility that converts wood waste into energy. The “e” in E-Wood stands for energy, in the form of green energy and high-pressure steam. “Wood” stands for wood waste that can’t be recycled, but can be used as a green fuel. E-Wood can treat up to 180,000 tonnes of uncontaminated treated wood waste per year, whereby green energy is generated. By the end of 2022 it will be supplying electricity to the grid and steam to the surrounding port businesses. By using this wood waste as a raw material for the production of green energy, this facility fits in with Europe’s sustainability goals. Curious readers can follow the project in a timelapse video of the construction works.