1 million tonnes of rubbish transformed into energy at Ardley plant
Can you imagine what 1 million tonnes or a billion kg of rubbish looks like? That’s about 450 Olympic sized pools filled with rubbish. All that mountain of waste has been incinerated at the Ardley Energy Recovery Facility and helped to divert 95% of Oxfordshire’s waste from landfill. Once there, it’s converted into electricity, powering 38,000 homes.
Oxfordshire County Council and its partner Viridor have marked the one millionth tonne of residual waste received at Ardley this week.
Oxfordshire County Council Cabinet Member for Environment, Yvonnne Constance, said: “I am delighted to see the Ardley Energy Recovery Facility reach this milestone. The service this facility provides in converting waste produced by the residents of Oxfordshire into valuable electricity is excellent. I look forward to continuing to work with Viridor to maximise even further the environmental benefits the ERF brings, particularly energy generation.”
Viridor’s Managing Director of Major Contracts, Chris Jonas, said the company was proud to recognise this landmark moment with its long-term partner in Oxfordshire: “Viridor and Oxfordshire County Council share a goal of recycling first and taking the residual waste – that which cannot be recycled – and giving it a new purpose. In this case this was achieved by transforming the non-recyclable waste into renewable energy and diverting more than 95% from landfill. We have also created an award-winning education centre where future generations are taught the value of recycling and the vital role it plays in partnership with renewable energy. It is here that many people hear about the waste hierarchy – and the need to reduce, reuse, recycle and recover – for the first time.”
Reduce, reuse, recycle, compost and turn waste into electricity
Councilor Yvonne Constance takes the "hot seat" in the Control Room at Ardley
Oxfordshire leads the country in recycling and composting and also not producing waste in the first place. Oxfordshire Country Council and Viridor are encouraging more people to book visits to Ardley’s ERF to find out how renewable electricity is produced and how it complements everything we do to reduce, reuse, recycle and compost as much of our waste as possible.
Construction of the Ardley ERF began next to the existing landfill site on 16 November 2011 with the first waste received at the site on 5 June 2014. In April 2014 Viridor announced the closure of the landfill site after 35 years so that the non-recyclable waste could be used as an energy from waste resource instead. The ERF produces enough energy to power 38,000 homes and can export up to 27MW per hour of electricity to the grid.
Ardley ERF Operations Manager Jim Thompson, Viridor Regional Contracts Manager Paul Rowland, Viridor’s Managing Director of Major Contracts Chris Jonas, Oxfordshire County Council Cabinet Member for Environment Yvonnne Constance and Oxfordshire County Council Strategic Manager (Waste and Transport) Andrew Pau.