Waste from Notting Hill Carnival could power 80,000 hot showers

Westminster City Council are expecting to collect around 200 tonnes of waste from Notting Hill Carnival this weekend, which, if converted correctly will generate enough energy to power 80,000 showers.

Around 170 workers and 60 vehicles will be in action over the weekend, collecting waste which will be incinerated at energy-from-waste plant South East London Combined Heat and Power (SELCHP).

Westminster’s waste partner Veolia told edie that it would recycle as much as possible by separating waste as it is collected, but still expected the non-recyclable trash to generate enough energy to travel 84km on the Tube.

Last year there were an estimated 100,000 recyclable items, many of which were plastic bottles and cans, collected by Veolia.

Biggest party in the world

Richard Beddoe, the Westminster Council cabinet member for city management, said: “As it celebrates its fiftieth birthday, we want everyone to enjoy Carnival while making sure the impact on our residents is minimised. It is inevitable, given the sheer size of the event that some rubbish is left behind on pavements and in gardens.

 “Just as in previous years, once again our cleaning teams will be working tirelessly to restore the area to pristine condition for residents and businesses as quickly as possible, following what is one of the biggest parties in the world.”

More than a million people are expected to turn out at the Carnival this bank holiday weekend, with the energy from their rubbish being sent to the National Grid for use.

The video below highlights the waste to resource process employed by Veolia in a neighbouring London Borough.

Banking on waste

The August bank holiday has a history of developing a lot of waste. Along with Notting Hill, the Reading and Leeds festivals helped the UK generate 40 million bags of rubbish across the UK.

This week Reading Festival announced a campaign that will help reduce the 20 tonnes of reusable camping equipment abandoned at the festival every year.

Matt Mace

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