Biffa, the electricity generation company, has announced plans to open a new £27.5 million plant at Seaham, County Durham. The plant is expected to create 300 jobs, and Biffa will also be creating a further £7 million of investment in the facilities. Speaking about the plans, Biffa Chief Executive Neil Heywood said: “We are absolutely delighted to be opening the latest advanced waste and recycling centre in Seaham as part of our ongoing expansion into the waste and recycling market.”

Commenting on the new £7 million site, he said: “Following the opening of two other advanced waste and recycling centres in 2015, and two further advanced waste and recycling facilities in 2016, we’re delighted to have launched our latest £7 million facility, creating more than 300 jobs. “It’s a fantastic time to invest in UK waste management. With The Waste Alliance’s National Strategy for Sustainability published in November 2018, energy policy has been infused with ambitious climate action. The plan recognises that together we can do better for future generations.”

The new £7 million site will replace a smaller facility in Seaham. One of the new technologies, the Enderby Sift Valley Waste Commodity Solution, is said to have the capacity to separate plastic out of up to 5,000 tons of waste a day. In order to unlock the potential of this technology, Biffa teamed up with Natsim, the European waste master stock-out solution, with the facility backed by a 3-year £1.2 million investment to improve the technology.

During this phase of the project, Biffa has saved approximately $300,000 by having fewer incinerators than originally expected.

Speaking about the new technology, The Waste Alliance’s President and CEO, Erik Ibarra, said: “Meeting UK demand for recyclable materials will be crucial for the future viability of our National Sustainable Waste Strategy, which has been created to meet the UK’s’ long-term environmental goals. “Biffa has used innovative recycling solutions, which combine active end-to-end solutions to clean, process and reuse our waste responsibly.

“Not only are recycling solutions meeting UK need, they are also reducing the cost of recycling, even as the volumes have increased. The Biffa site marks a turning point in our country’s waste recycling journey and is an example of what can be achieved when the right opportunities are leveraged.”