8 April 2014

Viridor renews Suffolk recycling contract

By Tom Goulding

Viridor has been awarded a renewed contract to sort and market an estimated 50,000 tonnes of mixed household recyclables from all seven local authorities in Suffolk.

The deal with the Suffolk Waste Partnership, could be worth up to 8 million to Viridor, which has already worked with six of the seven Suffolk councils for 10 years.

Viridor will sort mixed recyclables from the Suffolk councils at its Great Blakenham MRF

Viridor will sort mixed recyclables from the Suffolk councils at its Great Blakenham MRF

Viridor recovers mixed plastics, cartons, aluminium and steel cans, mixed paper and cardboard from Ipswich and St Edmundsbury borough councils, and Babergh, Forest Heath, Mid Suffolk and Suffolk Coastal district councils at its recycling materials facility (MRF) in Great Blakenham. The firm first signed with a contract to treat waste on behalf of the councils in 2004 (see letstrecycle.com story).

The new contract will also see Waveney district council join the other six local authorities for the first time in delivering material to Viridors Great Blakenham MRF. Mixed recyclables from Waveney have previously been sorted at a facility in Norfolk.

Viridor has signed an initial four and a half year deal with the local authorities, which includes an option for a possible two year extension.


Councillor Andrew Nunn, chair of the Suffolk Waste Partnership, said: The Partnership is pleased to announce the continuation of what has been a successful and productive 10-year association with Viridor, following a competitive tendering procedure.

In this time, recycling of household waste in Suffolk has risen from 8% to over 50% and the new arrangement will be fundamental as we strive to achieve our target of 60% by 2015. The excellent value achieved with this arrangement highlights what local councils can achieve working together, for the overall benefit of the Suffolk council tax payer.

Graham Warren, Viridors regional director, added: We are pleased to be able to continue working with the local councils in Suffolk with a true partnership approach at heart. Over the years, Viridor has helped the local councils in Suffolk achieve some of the highest recycling rates in the country and we look forward to continuing working with them in delivering efficient and cost-effective services to people in in the county.

Meanwhile, sources in Suffolk have indicated that the price per tonne for recyclables was a ‘great deal better’ than the Suffolk consortium had previously received under the fixed 2004 contract.


All seven local councils in Suffolk will continue to operate fortnightly commingled kerbside collections, while non-recyclable and residual waste that is currently sent to two Viridor-operated landfill sites in the county will instead go to SITA UKs Great Blakenham energy-from-waste plant from December 2014.

Earlier this month, Suffolk county council said it was open to discussion with Norfolk over sharing some excess capacity at the 170,000 tonne capacity site, following difficulties to establish its own incinerator in Kings Lynn (see letsrecycle.com story).


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