An application has been submitted to the Environment Agency for a major expansion of Envar’s Woodhurst composting facility in Cambridgeshire to handle other organics, such as organic residues from MBT plants.
Currently the site, near Cambridge, is permitted as an installation for 105,000 tonnes of mixed food and green waste processed through in-vessel composting.
Planning permission has been granted for the site expansion and Envar Composting Ltd now is seeking approval from the Environment Agency to vary the permit throughput to take in up to 200,000 tonnes of wastes per annum.
This would allow for 135,000 tonnes to be processed through the existing Gicom tunnel system, which Envar describes as the “Rolls Royce” of the in-vessel composting world. However, additional organic materials would be processed as well as ongoing household-sourced green waste mixed with food.
Envar explains: “Due to changes in local authority collection systems the volume of co-mingled food and green waste is reducing significantly therefore other organic wastes will be processed in addition to the food and green wastes.”
This will affect the amount of material produced to the PAS compost standard at the plant but Envar notes that the Gicom system can produce different separate outputs. The green/food waste will make a PAS standard material and this could run alongside a separate stream such as one producing a compost like output.
“For 2018 it is likely that some 95,000 tonnes of PAS input material will be processed with up to 40,000 tonnes of Non PAS inputs, the total combined inputs not to exceed 135,000 tonnes,” says the company. It expects that “by 2021 Non PAS inputs will be significantly higher than PAS inputs.”
The compost like output material, says Envar, will typically be made of organic residues from “MBT plants that require sanitisation and stabilisation before being used on approved restoration projects.
And, the company has told the Environment Agency that inputs of the MBT material will be restricted to the guaranteed approved outlets for this material. Envar said it has already secured an outlet that will take a minimum of 20,000 tonnes per annum of treated CLO.
At Woodhurst, virgin wood fuel will be used for two small scale biomass boilers. The application explains that “some organic wastes after sanitisation and stabilisation may require drying in which case they will move from this part of the site to the dryer area (provided of course they meet the acceptance for the dryer activity), otherwise they will be dispatched as soon as possible to the approved end destination”.
In April 2016 it was announced that agricultural recycler FGS Organics purchased EnVar Composting from the Adas Group and that Envar was believed to be the largest composting operations of its kind in the UK.
The sale was an addition to the portfolio of companies owned by Trevor Heathcote and formed a ‘natural progression’ for FGS Organics’ compost solutions, it was claimed. Mr Heathcote’s Kent-based group of companies include Countrystyle, FGS Agri, FGS Plant and Water Direct.