Although disposal of waste in landfill sites is no longer the preferred option, landfill will remain a necessary part of UK waste strategy into the foreseeable future for wastes that cannot be re-used, recycled, or recovered.
We operate 10 landfill sites across the UK, with space to 2030 and beyond in parts of the country with a shortage of waste disposal options. We also have a portfolio of 27 closed sites, that are now in Aftercare. We have a track record of effectively restoring and repurposing our closed landfill sites for alternative uses; this includes the development of renewable energy projects, high quality habitats for plants and the development of parks and open spaces for local communities.
Landfill gas is produced by the decomposition of wastes within landfill sites, and contains methane which is both a potent greenhouse gas and a valuable source of energy.
Landfill gas has been a major source of renewable energy production in the UK, and Viridor has been a pioneer in the development of landfill gas to energy schemes across its portfolio since the 1980s. Although economic and legislative drivers are diverting waste away from landfill we still have a portfolio of 32 energy generating sites.
We aim to work in partnership with our regulators and local community groups to ensure that our landfill sites comply with planning and environmental permitting obligations, through their entire life, from the operational phases to the end of the Aftercare period. We undertake extensive monitoring programmes to ensure that our sites are not causing environmental harm or nuisance, and hold regular community liaison meetings to explain how we are managing our sites and to answer any questions that local stakeholders may have.
Viridor has an installed capacity of 86MWe of power generation from landfill gas, spread over 32 sites across the UK, which operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week producing enough electricity to power 50,000 homes continuously.
Viridor has the second largest output of renewable power generation from landfill gas in the UK and own and operate most of these gas fields and energy facilities in-house.
This extensive portfolio is monitored and controlled by a state-of-the-art central control room in Ardley, Oxfordshire which ensures best practice environmental control, continual optimisation of the energy assets whilst deploying over 100 mobile, multi-skilled employees to operate and maintain the gas fields and the generation equipment.
As electricity production from landfill gas gradually reduces, we plan to use the spare export capacity for the development of other forms of power generation.
We have already started this journey, on our sites that have surplus grid connection capacity we have developed new technologies including 3.2MW of PV capacity, gas peaking schemes, an energy storage facility and we are assessing the potential for expansion of energy parks with private wire connections to local industry at our sites when more capacity becomes available.
Please contact us here if you have any questions about our landfill business.