Lakeside Energy from Waste Limited joint venture

02 September 2005 

Pennon Group Plc announces that its subsidiary, Viridor Waste Management Limited, has joined forces with Grundon Waste Management Ltd and set up a joint venture company, Lakeside Energy From Waste Limited, to build and operate an energy from waste plant at Colnbrook near Slough.

The joint venture is in line with Viridor Waste's strategy of capitalising on opportunities arising from the Government's developing waste strategy and will assist local authority customers in meeting their landfill diversion targets. Grundon is the largest family-owned waste management company in the UK. Its head office is in Wallingford, Oxfordshire and its mineral extraction and waste management operations cover mainly the Home Counties and East Anglia.

The plant will have a capacity of 400kt per annum; investment is projected to be £160m in the period to 2008. Viridor and Grundon will each own 50% of the joint venture and the investment will be financed within normal project finance parameters.

The plant will assist local councils in meeting their landfill diversion targets and avoiding penalties under the Landfill Allowance Trading Scheme (LATS). A number of these councils are existing waste disposal customers of Viridor or Grundon. It will also provide power generation capacity of 32 megawatts of electricity which will be fed into the national grid. The plant will be built at Grundon's strategically located site at Colnbrook near Slough which has relevant permissions and permits in place. The plant is scheduled to be commissioned mid-2008.

Commenting on the project, Colin Drummond Chief Executive of Viridor Waste said "I am delighted to announce this joint venture and we are particularly looking forward to developing the project with our new partners Grundon. The Government's landfill diversion targets impose a significant challenge on local councils over the period to 2020. This plant will enable us to assist our customers in meeting their targets and avoiding costs under the Landfill Allowance Trading Scheme".

For further information:
Colin Drummond, Chief Executive, Viridor Waste Limited, 01823 721 435
Jo Finely, Investor Relations Manager, Pennon Group plc, 01392 443 401
James Murgatroyd, Finsbury, 0207 251 3801

Additional information:
Viridor Waste Management is one of the UK's leading waste management companies and a market leader in recycling. It currently operates 22 regional landfill disposal sites, numerous recycling facilities and over 150 waste processing sites UK-wide.

Viridor provides a full range of waste and recycling services including advanced composting, glass reprocessing, materials recycling, waste to energy, transport, site restoration, and safe and efficient landfill disposal. Viridor also generates 61 megawatts of renewable energy and has recently won UK industry awards for the best-run landfills in three out of five years.

Viridor's stated strategy is to:

  • capitalise on its leading position in waste disposal by landfill;
  • exploit opportunities in renewable energy generation; and
  • pursue profitable opportunities arising from the UK Government's developing waste strategy.

The company's sites are accredited to the ISO14001 Environmental Management System, the highest recognised international standard, which ensures continuous improvement in environmental performance, and provides assurance to customers and communities alike.

Landfill Allowances Trading Scheme (LATS):

Article 5(2) of the EC Landfill Directive requires the UK to reduce the amount of biodegradable municipal waste (BMW) it sends to landfill. The Government has introduced the LATS (under the Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003) as a means of achieving the Directive landfill diversion targets. These targets are: by 2010 to reduce the amount of BMW going to landfill to 75% of that produced in 1995, 50% by 2013 and 35% by 2020. Landfill allowances have been allocated for each local authority. This will require a substantial increase in capacity for alternative treatment processes to landfill, an important alternative being energy from waste. A fixed penalty of £150 per tonne in England will be incurred if an authority breaches its landfill allowances in a scheme year; flexibilities in trading, banking and borrowing allowances will assist waste disposal authorities in meeting their obligations. As a result local authorities are now actively seeking solutions to achieve their landfill diversion targets.

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