Eric Pickles endorses MBT for future waste recovery

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles lent his support to energy from waste by visiting a mechanical biological treatment (MBT) facility in Bournemouth last week.

Pickles, who is a keen advocate of MBT, dropped by the New Earth Solutions Canford organic treatment facility to see how the company handles Bournemouth’s residual household waste.

Accompanied by representatives from Bournemouth Council, he learnt about the long-standing partnership between the two organisations and how the technology works.

New Earth is developing its own process to recover energy from waste, known as NEAT – New Earth Advanced Thermal.

A demonstration NEAT unit at Canford has been used by the Dorset-based company to test the process and eight units are now being installed in New Earth’s first commercial-scale energy recovery plant alongside its waste facility in Avonmouth.

The process treats the fuel at very high temperatures in a controlled environment, converting it into a high-energy gas to power a boiler and steam turbine or a gas engine, creating renewable electricity. Each NEAT unit generates enough power to meet the needs of around 1,800 homes.

Bournemouth Council’s acting chief executive Jane Portman said: “Just 18% of Bournemouth’s waste goes into landfill compared to the national average of almost 50%. We were delighted to be able to show the minister just how successful the contractual working relationship is between our two organisations.”

Maxine Perella

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