MBT plant for Lake District

Cumbria County Council has once again shown its backing for the Mechanical Biological Treatment of waste, giving the green light for development of a second in as many years.

Last Tuesday, the council gave the thumbs up for the facility that will be built on an industrial estate in Barrow.

It is planned to be fully operational by 2013 when it could process up to 75,000 tonnes of waste that would otherwise have been sent to landfill.

The MBT process allows waste to be shredded, dried and transformed into Solid Recovered Fuel (SRF) which can be burned to provide an alternative source of energy to fossil fuels.

Last summer Cumbria County Council signed a 25-year £700million contract with Shanks to transform waste disposal by creating two MBT plants to process waste that would otherwise have been sent to landfill.

Construction started last autumn on an MBT plant at Hespin Wood near Carlisle and the plant is due to come into service in 2012.

Marie Fallon, Cumbria County Council’s environment corporate director, said: “Getting the approval for this planning application is a big step in revolutionising waste and recycling services in Cumbria.

“Our contract with Shanks will massively reduce the amount of rubbish being sent to landfill and provide the county with a greener, more cost-effective system for dealing with residual waste for many years to come.

“The MBT plant at Hespin Wood near Carlisle is really taking shape, so it’s great news we’ve now got permission for the Barrow plant too.”

Each year the county council deals with around 300,000 tonnes of waste.

When the MBT plants are in operation they will process approximately 120,000 tonnes annually, with 150,000 tonnes being recycled and the remaining 30,000 tonnes going to landfill as it can’t be recycled or dealt with by the MBT process.

David Gibbs

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