News in brief (02/08/2022)

With news on: BEIS announces heat networks funding; Aviva appeals against Barry Biomass demolition notice; Redbridge fines businesses over lack of waste documentation; Jo Churchill visits FCC HWRC; and, Essity Prudhoe Mill to replace recycling plant.

BEIS announces heat networks funding

The government announced last week (29 July) that it will award more than £54 million to innovative heat network projects in England in a bid “to shield homes and businesses from costly fossil fuels”.

According to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the funding will support the development of schemes in London, Bedfordshire and Woking, using low-carbon heat sources such as heat pumps and energy from waste (EfW) to heat nearly 28,000 properties.

The funding was announced by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS)

Almost £28 million is planned to fund 2 innovative heat network projects in Haringey in London, with nearly £17 million going to a project in Stewartby in Bedfordshire and a further £9 million for one in Woking.

The funding is set to enable the projects to develop and complete construction of the networks providing energy to households and commercial sites including shops, offices and public buildings.

A total of over £250 million has been awarded since 2018, including projects in Bristol, Gateshead, Leeds and Liverpool, the government said.

Aviva appeals against Barry Biomass demolition notice

Aviva Investors has appealed against the Planning Enforcement Notice served in September last year on its Barry Biomass plant.

In September 2021, the planning committee of Vale of Glamorgan council unanimously agreed it would look to issue a demolition order due to “discrepancies between the approved elevation and site layout plans”, which included elements the council said it did not grant consent for (see story).

Initially due to be filed in April this year, the company planned to submit the Appeal Environmental Statement by 29 July. The extension was requested so that the appeal “could take into account any points raised in the consultation on the Voluntary Environmental Statement”.

The consultation report was originally supposed to be published in May 2022, the company explained. When this was delayed, Barry Biomass requested a further extension to December this year.

According to the company, Planning and Environment Decisions Wales who are conducting the appeal, were concerned that no definitive date for publishing the consultation responses had been confirmed by the Welsh Government.

Redbridge fines businesses over lack of waste documentation

Redbridge council’s initiative to keep the borough clean saw 11 businesses fined after failing to provide evidence showing how they dispose of their commercial waste.

The council Enforcement Officers visited 55 businesses in total, offering waste management advice.

The Enforcement Officers issued fines to 11 businesses over lack of waste documentation

The local authority explained that as part of the visit, businesses were also issued a legal notice to provide waste documentation to show how they are currently getting rid of their rubbish.

Of the 55 businesses 11 failed to produce the required documentation resulting in £300 fines each, the council added.

Enforcement Officers also reminded business owners “it is an offence to dispose of commercial waste in domestic bins, public bins or recycling centres, and placing it on the public highway without a collection arrangement constitutes fly-tipping”.
Redbridge cabinet member for environment and civic pride Cllr Jo Blackman, said: “The majority dispose of their waste responsibly, but it’s essential we keep the pressure on those that don’t.”

Jo Churchill visits FCC HWRC

Former recycling minister Jo Churchill visited the reuse shop in Bury St Edmunds, where she is local MP, run by The Benjamin Foundation in partnership with FCC Environment and Suffolk county council.

FCC Environment said that Ms Churchill visited last month to see the work the organisations do to move resources higher up the waste hierarchy.

The former recycling minister, who stood down last month, was in post when the consultation on banning charges at HWRCs was published.

The former recycling minister visited the reuse shop last month

According to FCC Environment, Suffolk county council, the waste management company and The Benjamin Foundation collect items for reuse from 11 recycling centres in Suffolk. They operate two reuse shops, one at the Foxhall recycling centre near Ipswich and another near Bury St Edmunds.

The company said that from March 2021 to February 2022, the Foxhall shop diverted almost 350 tonnes of material for reuse, with the Bury St Edmunds shop diverting over 124 tonnes throughout 2020 despite only being open for seven months due to Covid restrictions.

Essity Prudhoe mill to replace recycling plant

Essity Prudhoe Mill has announced plans to replace its old recycling plant with a new building.

The company submitted a planning application to Northumberland county council, which is expected to come to a decision in the coming months.

Essity aims to install the latest recycling technology, which the company said will help reduce energy costs, increase its ability to make new products from recycled fibre and reduce its dependence on virgin material.

Essity’s programme manager Paul Oliver explained that the old Unifibres building has “served us well but both it and some of the equipment it houses have reached the end of their working lives”.

If the planning application is approved, Essity will be able to recycle new sources of lower-grade material – such as cardboard packaging used for the delivery of online shopping items.

Mr Oliver added: “Essity is committed to a more sustainable future and using recycled paper in our toilet rolls and paper towels has always been central to that.
“A high proportion of recycled paper in our products is also popular with our supermarket customers and environmentally-aware shoppers.”

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