Multi million pound Waterbeach waste sorting plant back in action

Inside AmeyCespa's Waterbeach plant.

Inside AmeyCespa's Waterbeach plant. - Credit: Archant

A multi-million pound Cambridgeshire waste sorting machine that was shut for more than a year after it broke down is back in action.

The Mechanical Biological Treatment (MBT) plant at AmeyCespa’s Waterbeach site is once again processing all the county’s household waste.

The plant began to process waste earlier this autumn and the volume of waste materials fed to the facility has been gradually increased to ensure it is operating as it should.

On September 18 last year a 105ft steel beam broke sending a giant wheel spinning out of control.

While it was closed 2,200 tonnes a week of Cambridgeshire’s black bin waste was sent to landfill instead.

Paul Greenwell, managing director of AmeyCespa, said: “We are happy to confirm that the MBT plant is once again processing black bag waste from homes across Cambridgeshire.

“Not only have we replaced the turning machinery which failed in 2012, but we have also taken the opportunity to make improvements to the mechanical treatment element of the plant.

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“This allows us to further maximise the benefits from the county’s household waste.”

Cambridgeshire County Councillor Mathew Shuter said: “We are pleased that the MBT plant is now processing waste again.

“AmeyCespa has worked very hard with their contractors to carry out the significant work which has brought the facility back into operation.

“It is important to remember that throughout this time the authority and local council tax payers were protected from any additional costs incurred because of the breakdown due to the robust contract we have in place.

“Working with residents, local authorities and AmeyCespa, we have the ability to continue to reduce the amount we send to landfill – our challenge is to use the services we have in place to do this.”

The Mechanical Biological Treatment plant is a key part of AmeyCespa’s 28-year PFI contract with Cambridgeshire County Council.

It processes waste put out in black bins/sacks across Cambridgeshire, removing recyclable materials before sending the remaining waste to biodegrade.

This reduces the amount of household waste going to landfill by at least 50 per cent.

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