French group Suez takes on west London's waste with 25-year contract

Suez Environnement subsidiary Sita UK is leading a consortium that has just signed a £760m, 25-year residual waste contract with the West London Waste Authority (WLWA). Over its duration, the contract is worth £1.4bn, and will see £244m invested into new infrastructure.

Sita UK, along with partners Scottish Widows Investment Partners and Itochu Corporation, will develop infrastructure to manage up to 300,000 tonnes of residual municipal waste every year. Residual waste is what's left over once recyclable material has been taken out. The consortium will collect the waste from the London boroughs of Brent, Ealing, Harrow, Hillingdon, Hounslow and Richmond upon Thames - that's a combined population of 1.6m - and transport it by rail to the new Severnside Energy Recovery Centre in South Gloucester.

The 34 megawatt facility will produce enough electricity to power the equivalent of 50,000 homes and also provide heat to local businesses. The solution will enable the WLWA to divert 96 per cent of its waste from landfill and is expected to save two million tonnes of CO2 over the contract period.

Construction on the Severnside Recovery Centre is due to start in December, with expectations that it'll be finished in 2016. It'll employ around 200 people in construction and create 53 jobs once built.

Councillor Bassam Mahfouz, chair of WLWA, said: “A large proportion of our household waste can be recycled, and this contract will support west London’s commitment to recycle at least 50 per cent by 2020."