A tailored £19m investment fund for financing waste infrastructure which is proving difficult to get off the ground in the capital has been launched today by the London Waste & Recycling Board (LWARB).

Under this scheme, LWARB will work with project sponsors and potential funders to create an investment structure that will help ensure that a potential project it considers “suitable” is not put in jeopardy through lack of finance.

LWARB chairman Richard Tracey said that access to finance was a critical barrier to infrastructure delivery in London.

“For this reason, this plan outlines a flexible approach to infrastructure financing. Investment in new waste infrastructure to move the treatment of waste away from landfill has substantial benefits for London and the UK,” he commented.

Over the past two years LWARB has committed almost £51m to various projects to improve waste management in the capital.

The board has come under criticism for failing to issue funds in the past, but it has recently demonstrated steady delivery, such as financing the TEG Group to develop London’s first anaerobic digestion (AD) plant, which is now under construction and due to open later this year.

LWARB has commitments this year for increased AD capacity and a new plastic reprocessing plant.

The scheme launched today was announced alongside LWARB’s new business plan, which covers the two years from April 2013 to 2015.

The plan also provides details of the Waste Efficiencies Programme, aimed at helping London waste authorities save money without the need to cut frontline services.

Here LWARB has encouraged London boroughs to work together on joint procurement projects to provide economies of scale.

Maxine Perella

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