At the end of just over two years work to create the new energy from waste plant at Millerhill has now reached an advanced stage.
The site is a joint venture by Midlothian and The City of Edinburgh Councils who have begun depositing waste there on a trial basis.
In December electricity was generated from the plant’s turbine, although it will be about another six months before the plant is complete and becomes fully operational.
At that point the site is expected to treat around 135,000 tonnes of household waste each year and 20,000 tonnes of commercial waste. This should power 32,000 homes, and district heating schemes are also being developed to take advantage of the energy generated.
Transport and Environment Convener, Councillor Lesley Macinnes, said: “I’m extremely encouraged by the progress of this project, which is fast approaching completion. By working with Midlothian Council, both areas will be able to benefit from this major energy-from-waste plant in the near future.
“As a Council, we are committed to reducing the amount of waste sent to landfill, and the new facility will be central to our efforts, while also providing a long-term solution for the recovery of value from the residual waste.”
Midlothian Council’s Cabinet Member for Zero Waste, Councillor Russell Imrie, said: “It’s exciting to see this partnership project coming to fruition and already generating green energy. The plant will be a huge asset, helping both councils meet Zero Waste targets and diverting an astonishing 155,000 tonnes of waste from landfill.”
A separate facility, which takes all of the food waste collected by the partner councils, is already in operation on the neighbouring site to the RERC. It is hoped these new facilities to treat both food and non-recyclable waste, creating renewable energy in the process, will help both authorities contribute to the national recycling target of 70% by 2025 and the national landfill diversion target of 95% by 2025.