Viridor and E.ON in talks over Cardiff district heating scheme

Waste management company Viridor has confirmed it is in talks with energy firm E.ON to develop a district heating network powered by an energy-from-waste plant currently under development.

If the plans go ahead, in a first of its kind for Wales, excess heat from the waste-burning plant at the Trident Park site in the Splott area of Cardiff City will be captured and piped underground.

The facility will generate 30MW of electricity, enough to supply the equivalent of up to 50,000 homes.

In addition, the heat and high-grade steam needed to support a district heating network will add an extra 20MW to the plant’s energy output.

E.ON head of community energy Jeremy Bungey said: “Schemes like this can help entire communities meet the triple challenge of keeping energy secure, affordable and lower carbon.

“These are the very early stages of what could be a hugely exciting project bringing real benefits to the Welsh capital and across south east Wales.

District heating schemes provide a secure supply of heat and hot water to homes and buildings through a network of well-insulated underground pipes fed by a central source such as a combined heat and power plant.

Cardiff Council aims to assist businesses and residents to act more sustainably and it plans to centre its One Planet Cardiff vision on this project.

Cabinet Member for the Environment Ashley Govier said: “There is scope at the Viridor Trident Park site to produce heat for consumption in homes and businesses and significantly increase the energy efficiency of the plant, providing lower cost, lower carbon energy to users in local wards.

“With spiralling energy prices and fuel poverty high on the agenda, establishing a significant heat network in Cardiff has the opportunity to not only embed the latest infrastructure to boost the economy within the city but also assist some of our most disadvantaged communities struggling with heat poverty.”

Conor McGlone

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