Biffa and Lunaz strike RCV ‘upcycling’ deal

Biffa has struck a deal with refuse collection vehicle (RCV) ‘upcycler’ Lunaz Applied Technologies which will see the “electrification and upcycling” of an initial 10 end-of-life diesel vehicles.

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Lunaz Applied Technologies is a new entrant into the RCV market, having opened what it describes as an “RCV upcycling” warehouse in Silverstone earlier this year.

The company is financially backed by former footballer David Beckham, with Ian Wakelin, the former Biffa chief executive and now Viridor chairman, sitting on the board.

At the Silverstone warehouse, the company takes in end-of-life RCVs and refurbishes them into electric vehicles with a “like new” warranty and specifically tailored to the client. It has a capacity of 1,1000 vehicles per year.

The deal with Biffa marks Lunaz’ major entrance into the UK market. Lunaz said the “multi-year production programme” is expected to see growing numbers of vehicles delivered to Biffa over the mid-term. The initial 10 vehicles will saving up to 210 tonnes in embedded carbon, Lunaz said.

Following the successful completion of technical trials and due diligence, first deliveries will take place for operations on UK refuse collection routes in 2023. Biffa’s refuse trucks will operate on both commercial and municipal waste collection routes.


Maxine Mayhew, Biffa’s chief operating officer for collection & specialist services, said: “I am thrilled to announce Biffa and Lunaz’ fleet electrification and upcycling partnership. As the UK’s leading sustainable waste management company we are committed to enabling the circular economy while reducing emissions and carbon expenditure in every aspect of our business.

“By working with Lunaz to meet our goal of buying no more fossil fuelled vehicles by 2030 while breaking the replace-with-new cycle, we pioneer an approach in this industry that saves millions of tonnes in embedded carbon. I am proud that every electric vehicle upcycled by Lunaz for Biffa’s fleet will mean one less tailpipe emission emitting vehicle for our planet. This long-term partnership with Lunaz is a major pillar in our collective effort to achieve our 2030 commitments. We are proud to work with an innovative UK company to realise the transformational power of upcycling to save thousands of tonnes of embedded carbon in our transition to clean-air refuse truck fleets.”

This deal is a strong endorsement of Lunaz’ innovative approach

  • David Beckham, Lunaz investor


Lunaz explained that the deal with Biffa represents landmark step towards “cleaning up” one of Britain’s largest fleet of bin lorries. The company said the deal ensures older vehicles are upcycled instead of scrapped as Biffa transitions its fleet to zero-emissions “powertrains”.

Every up-cycled electric vehicle produced by Lunaz saves 82% of the embedded carbon within that vehicle, the company added.

In signing the fleet electrification and upcycling agreement, Lunaz added that it has committed to supporting the transition of Biffa’s existing diesel refuse trucks over the next decade to clean-air electric RCVs “through its proprietary upcycling and electrification process and technology”.

Lunaz is also seeking to capture parts of the local authority market, explaining that the procurement of its services for upcycling old RCVs into electric vehicles “represents a significant saving for the taxpayer, with more than £1 million in public money saved for every 20 vehicles upcycled and electrified versus buying new EV equivalents”.


David Lorenz, founder and chief executive of Lunaz, added: “Biffa has led from the front in pioneering more sustainable waste management practices here in the UK. At Lunaz, we are proud to assist in delivering Biffa’s sustained commitment to leading the waste management industry’s transition to net zero.

“By embracing the power of upcycling as a dramatically more sustainable course to the transition to a clean air fleet, Biffa delivers economic value to its stakeholders while delivering a great ecological dividend to the planet. By finding new life for diesel-emitting vehicles, we are delighted to stand together with a leading UK company in creating the potential to reduce global emissions at scale.”

The announcement was also hailed by David Beckham, who added: This deal is a strong endorsement of Lunaz’ innovative approach to finding sustainable solutions and I’m delighted to be an investor in this fast growing and exciting British company”.


As well as making old diesel vehicles electric, the company says it is able to make safety improvements too. This includes the use of 360 cameras with person and cyclist detection and the re-location of the handbrake to ensure drivers never need to take their hands off the wheel.

The screens also feature object detection, highlighting cyclists, pedestrians and potential hazards to the driver.

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