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How London turns its waste into energy

Veolia supports the London Borough of Southwark in its domestic waste recovery policy with an ultramodern waste management center opened in 2012.


The waste management facility of Southwark incorporates a sorting center that isolates high quality materials, a recycling center treating household waste and bulky waste, and a mechanical-biological treatment unit dedicated to recovering biodegradable waste.
Efficient sorting techniques and innovative treatment units mean the district can process 120,000 tons of waste per year and achieve a recycling rate of 40%. This rate has doubled since the beginning of the contract, due to the optimization of waste collection and increased public awareness.

Turning waste into heat and electricity

Veolia is also responsible for transforming biodegradable waste from the mechanical-biological treatment process into fuel.
The fuel is transported to the South East London Combined Heat and Power (SELCHP) cogeneration plant to generate electricity and heat for 2,600 Southwark homes. Compared to using gas boilers, cogeneration this solution avoids the emission of almost 8,000 metric tons of CO2 equivalent per year.
This solution not only contributes to increase the share of renewables in the UK’s energy mix, but also to meet the 2020 target set by the European Union to reduce by 35% the amount of municipal biodegradable waste sent to landfills compared to 1995 volumes.

120,000 metric tons of waste processed annually

Recycling rate of 40% in 2014

8,000 tons of CO2 avoided per year


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