Green North East Trading Bidco Limited – which trades as Impetus Waste Management – has entered administration with its two waste transfer sites to close.
Joe O’Connor and John Sumpton of Ernst & Young (EY) LLP have been appointed as joint administrators of the business it was revealed today (11 November). The closure of the sites in Teesside and Leeds, which handle refuse derived fuel (RDF) for export, are expected to result in the loss of 73 jobs.
But, operations at the waste business’ landfill and composting sites in Leeds and Teesside will continue, after the sites were sold to newly-incorporated company Highfield Environmental Limited.
One of the largest commercial and industrial waste processors in the North East, Impetus holds commercial and household waste contracts across the region including handling residual waste on behalf of North Lincolnshire and Hull city councils.
In an announcement yesterday (10 November), EY said the company had faced ‘increasing difficulties’ due to changes in the market, which had resulted in additional costs for its waste transfer stations in Teesside and Leeds.
Impetus’ Teesside site housed a 500,000 tonnes-per-year waste transfer station, which the company had described as one of the largest in Europe (see letsrecycle.com story).
The site was set up to supply RDF to fuel Air Products’ large-scale Tees Valley gasification plant under a long-term contract with the company, but Air Products cancelled the project in early 2016 due to operational challenges.
Impetus had instead focussed on the export of its RDF product to energy from waste plants in Europe.
However, EY has claimed that the business had become ‘loss-making’. It is understood the company had been seeking a buyer for the waste transfer sites in the weeks leading up to the announcement.
Staff at the company’s two waste transfer stations have been made redundant ‘with immediate effect’ – with EY to support those affected including assisting them with claiming back money owed.
Mr O’Connor said: “Unfortunately earlier this year Impetus’ main Refuse Derived Fuel (‘RDF’) offtaker, Air Products, was no longer able to take the RDF being produced and the absence of viable alternative RDF offtakes made the WTS facilities in North Tees and Leeds unsustainable.
“The management team looked to identify UK and export opportunities for the RDF produced at these facilities however the volumes and prices achieved were unfavourable. Despite internal improvements in efficiency the company’s management were sadly unable to return this part of the business to profitability resulting in today’s decision to place Impetus into administration.”
In addition to the RDF business, Impetus also operated two landfill and composting facilities at Cowpen Bewley and Teesport.
These have been sold to Highfield Environmental Limited, safeguarding the jobs of the ‘majoirty’ of the workforce at these locations and at its head office in Wynyard, EY said.
Companies House records show that Highfield Environmental was incorporated on 20 October this year with David Robert Wallace named as sole director.
Mr O’Connor added: “The landfill and composting facilities and the Total Waste Management operation continue to remain profitable but they were unable to fully support the WTS business. These facilities will continue under new ownership with relevant employees transferred over to the new owners, saving 31 jobs.”