The company said that the solar farm will be installed by Gamma Energy Limited, with work due to start in early autumn and expected to be completed by the end of the year.
Biowise explained that the development is part of a three-year project in partnership with the local authority. The 4.1 megawatt solar farm is set to power the composting plant as well as generating energy for the national grid, the firm added.
The solar farm is to be built on a land adjacent to the composting plant and expected to generate power for about 1,200 houses.
Bob Wilkes, managing director at Biowise, highlighted that the project will add a carbon neutral source of power to the process by which Cheshire East council recycles its food and garden waste. “It provides residents with a model of best practice on how to manage local waste and we are delighted to have been able to play our part in that process,” he added.
The development aims to help Cheshire East council fulfil its commitment of becoming carbon neutral in its operations by 2025.
Councillor Mick Warren, chair of the council’s environment and communities committee, commented: “Cheshire East council is committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2025, and that means reducing emissions that the council has direct control over.”
“Projects like Leighton Grange are vital, in order to offset some of those emissions and help us to reach our target,” he said.
The facility at Leighton Grange with a capacity to process up to 75,000 tonnes per annum of food and garden waste became fully operational in June 2020 (see letsrecycle.com story).
Biowise said that over 95% of the waste inputs are recycled into BSI PAS 100 certified compost for use in horticultural, agricultural and landscaping markets. The remaining 5% gets recycled or sent for energy recovery, it added.
Biowise is the organics recycling arm of Wastewise and is owned by Urbaser Ltd, UK subsidiary if the Urbaser Group following acquisition in May 2022 (see letsrecycle.com story).
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