US incineration giant Covanta has been named preferred bidder for the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead residual waste treatment contract.
This represents the first time the company has been in pole position for a UK council waste contract seven years after it first entered the UK waste management market.Covanta is also currently in the running for major contracts with the Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority and North London Waste Authority.
The 25 year Windsor and Maidenhead deal, which covers both residual waste and organic waste treatment, will cover around 50,000 tonnes of residual and organic waste a year 36,000 of which will be sent to the energy-from-waste incinerator being developed by Covanta at Rookery Pit, Bedfordshire which received planning consent in October 2011 (see letsrecycle.com story).
The site will be operated on a merchant basis, having a capacity of 585,000 tonnes-a-year but not built to serve a specific local authority waste contract.
A spokesman for Covanta said the company could not comment on the deal or where the waste would be sent while the plant is being developed, until the council made an official anouncement. At the moment the material goes to landfill. However,the Covanta spokesmandid confirm that Covanta did not hold or had not been named preferred bidder for any other waste contracts in the UK.
Details of competitor bids have not been released..
Award of the contract is intended to help cut the cost of Windsor and Maidenheads waste disposal – which amounts to around 3 million each year. The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead is a unitary authority, meaning it handles both municipal waste collection and disposal functions.
The council is expected to sign the contract with Covanta later this year.