Wealden Works
FAQ
Sources of waste for the 3R's facility

Sources of waste for the 3R's facility

Where will the waste come from?
The Waste Local Plan estimates that approximately 1 million tonnes of municipal and commercial waste are produced in West Sussex. Even if 60% of this is recycled, it means that over 400,000 tonnes per year needs to be disposed of.  West Sussex has no landfills and no energy from waste plants. Therefore, all of this waste is being exported out of the County to be disposed of in other counties or in Europe. Britaniacrest is heavily involved in this already and itself exports up to 150,000 tonnes per year to continental Europe. 

Significantly, the 3Rs facility will divert 90% of residual waste away from landfill or being exported for treatment in European EfW plants. Both landfilling and exporting waste wastes a valuable local resource and the economic advantages for West Sussex. It should be noted that when the UK exports waste to Europe it has to pay the countries concerned to take it, which enables them to produce cheap electricity at our cost.

Will the 3Rs facility create an over-supply of energy from waste capacity in the UK?
In 2016, the UK landfilled 15.7 million tonnes of municipal waste. In addition, due to the closure of many landfill sites and insufficient EfW capacity, the UK exports approximately 3 million tonnes to other European countries for EfW treatment. 

Even with a significant increase in recycling with robust recycling markets, there will continue to be residual waste that will need EfW treatment. The UK has a significant shortage of energy-from-waste treatment capacity and the 3Rs facility will provide much-needed treatment capacity for household and non-hazardous commercial and industrial waste. 

In the future this need is likely to escalate as availability of the export market decreases and cost of export increases.  More information on the UK’s need for more energy from waste capacity can be found here.

Will the 3R's facility treat medical and hazardous waste?

No, the 3Rs facility can only accept non-hazardous residual household, business and industrial waste from UK sources.  Commercial and Industrial (C&I) waste arises from the business sector, such as shops, offices and factories, and the composition of residual C&I waste is very similar to household waste left over after recycling. 

No hazardous waste will be accepted or processed at the facility. Importantly, the types of waste that the 3Rs facility can accept will be clearly set out in the Environmental Permit and monitored by the Environment Agency.