Suez is to suspend operations at its £7 million Solid Recovered Fuel (SRF) production facility at Landor Street, Birmingham, until further notice, as the company moves full production of Climafuel to its SRF facility in Rugby.
SRF is a more processed form of refuse derived fuel and the Suez material is supplied to a specification to meet the needs of cement producer Cemex. This fuel is known as Climafuel.
Suez holds a 25-year contract to supply the Cemex kiln in Rugby with approximately 240,000 tonnes of Climafuel each year. Of this 200,000 tonnes had previously been produced at the SRF facility in Rugby, with the balance (40,000 tonnes) being produced at Landor Street.
In a statement issued yesterday (January 10), Suez said that following the suspension of the Landor Street operation, which will take effect in the coming weeks, it is planning to invest in upgrading the existing equipment at Landor Street “to benefit future production for other SRF users domestically and abroad.”
However, Suez said that no target date has yet been set for the re-opening, which it said “will be dependent on offtake markets.”
The production of SRF at Landor Street facility commenced in 2013 (see letsrecycle.com story), and, according to Suez, acted as a testbed for the Rugby site.
Waste going to the plant is repeatedly sifted and shredded, with metals, plastics and paper taken out for recycling. Material with a high water or chlorine content, which would harm the cement-making process is also removed.
The Rugby SRF facility opened in September 2015 and, through “process optimisation and a recent move to 24/7 operations” Suez said it was now able to meet Cemex’s total SRF requirement from that site alone.
The majority of waste feedstock currently coming in to Landor Street, which arises mainly from industrial and commercial sources, will now be diverted to Rugby, a spokesman explained, with customers being notified of the changes.
Suez said that the Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) operation, which forms the bulk of Suez’s activity at Landor Street, would remain unaffected by these changes.
In 2016, Suez was the second largest exporter of waste derived fuels from England after Biffa (see letsrecycle.com story).