Although disposal of waste in landfill sites in no longer the preferred option, landfill will remain a necessary waste management option into the foreseeable future for all of those wastes that cannot be re-used, recycled, or treated in our Energy Recovery Facilities to generate electricity.
We operate 10 landfill sites across the UK, with a consented remaining capacity of 30 million cubic metres; this means that we will have space in our landfill sites to 2030 and beyond in parts of the country with a shortage of capacity. We also have a portfolio of 27 closed sites, that are now in Aftercare. We have a track record of effectively restoring and repurposing our closed landfill sites for alternative uses; this includes the development of renewable energy projects, habitats for nature and to increase biodiversity, and the development of parks and open spaces for local communities.
We are committed to operating our landfill sites to the highest environmental standards, where possible using the best available technology to operate our sites efficiently and achieve the best environmental outcomes. Landfill gas is produced by the decomposition of wastes within landfill sites, and contains methane which is both a potent greenhouse gas and a valuable source of energy. Landfill gas has been a major source of renewable energy production in the UK, and Viridor has been a pioneer in the development of landfill gas to energy schemes across its portfolio since the 1980s. Although economic and legislative drivers are diverting waste away from landfill we still have a portfolio of 32 generating sites with an installed capacity of 86MW. We also have a Central Control Room which monitors and controls our landfill gas operations on a continuous basis, 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. As electricity production from landfill gas gradually reduces because of waste diversion, we plan to use the spare export capacity for the development of other forms of power generation. On our sites that have surplus grid connection capacity we have developed new technologies including 3.2MW of PV capacity, an energy storage facility, and we are assessing the potential for energy parks with private wire connections to local industry at our sites when more capacity becomes available. We also have technologically advanced treatment plants to treat leachate, which ensure that this waste water product that is generated by landfill sites is disposed of safely.
We aim to work in partnership with our regulators and local community groups to ensure that our landfill sites comply with planning and environmental permitting obligations, through their entire life, from the operational phases to the end of the Aftercare period. We undertake extensive monitoring programmes to ensure that our sites are not causing environmental harm or nuisance, and hold regular community liaison meetings to explain how we are managing our sites and to answer any questions that local stakeholders may have. Each of our sites operates under the highest quality, environmental, energy efficiency, and health and safety standards – certified to ISO 9001, ISO 14001, ISO 50001 and OHSAS 18001 respectively.
Please contact us here if you have any questions about our landfill business.
For more information download our brochure.