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Glasgow RREC 70% milestone

22nd July 2015

Glasgow’s £154 million state-of-the-art recycling and renewable energy facility in Polmadie reached a significant milestone this month (July 2015), when the 300 strong construction team confirmed that they had finished more than 70 percent of the build. The milestone was marked with the arrival of a £5m Weir Group turbine on site which will be at the heart of the site’s renewable energy generation capabilities.

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The Glasgow Recycling and Renewable Energy Centre (GRREC) – a joint partnership development between Glasgow City Council and Viridor – is due to open for business in 2016 and is set to revolutionise the way Scotland’s largest city handles its 200,000 tonnes of annual residual and green bin waste over a period of 25 years.

As it stands, the majority of GRECC’s external construction is complete and the team are on the cusp of finishing the leading-edge materials recycling and anaerobic digestion facilities, which will boost recycling and generate renewable energy from food and organic material.

In addition, work on the gasification technology, which will recover enough energy to power over 22,000 homes across Glasgow, is approaching the finishing stage with the site’s stack – a key feature of the facility’s stringent environmental controls, now installed.

The £5m Weir Group turbine, which arrived on site, weighs over one hundred tonnes, and rotates at over 5,400 revolutions per minute. The turbine will convert steam generated from the synthetic gas (syngas) derived from converting residual waste, into electrical power, which will be exported to the grid.

Alan Cumming, Viridor’s Capital Projects & Engineering Director, said:

“It has been fantastic to see such a transformation in a relatively short timeframe. And it’s all down to the hard work and commitment from all the men and women involved.

“From construction apprentices and Year in Industry Students, to skilled and professional roles, the project is a real team effort. Everyday passers-by notice that progress is being made.

“We’re delighted too that a Weir Group turbine will be at the heart of the facility – yet another Glasgow business benefiting from this transformative project.”

Once operational, GRREC will be one of Europe’s most advanced recycling and energy recovery facilities, with the potential to heat the equivalent of some 8,000 homes.

In line with Glasgow’s ambition to be a resource and renewable energy leader and one of the cleanest, greenest cities in Europe, GRREC represents a significant step in the right direction.

Speaking of the key 70 per cent milestone, the Leader of Glasgow City Council, Councillor Gordon Matheson said:

“It’s magnificent to see this facility coming together with the help of so many local men and women, all working tirelessly to make it a reality.

“Once finished, GRREC will take us a step closer to meeting our ambition to make Glasgow a truly sustainable European player, realising key economic, environmental and community benefits for local people in the process. I am very proud to be part of this project and look forward to seeing the final result next year.”

Rick Brawn, Managing Director, Weir Services Europe, said:

“The Weir group has been very proud to be part of the Glasgow Recycling & Renewable Energy Centre. This installation is good news for the team at Weir including apprentices Peter and Michael, for UK engineering, and for Glasgow’s long term waste management ambitions.”

Once open, GRREC will offer 77 direct and indirect jobs as well and will deliver a saving to Glasgow of 90,000 tonnes of CO2 every year. Our apprentices, Peter and Michael, who started just a few months ago, and they have worked on the technical aspects of this project.

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