Category: Corporate Responsibility (CSR) Subcategory: Sustainability & the Environment Award won: Sustainability & the Environment subcategory
In 2013, Veolia and Southwark Council commissioned London’s first energy from waste district heating network at SELCHP Ltd – one of only five in the UK.
The £7m scheme supplies low carbon heat and hot water to over 10,000 residents via the SELCHP energy recovery facility in Deptford at no cost to the local authority. Non-recyclable household waste is converted into sustainable energy providing a long-term alternative to gas.
Combined Heat and Power (CHP) efficiently generates energy and protects the environment, preventing 8,000tpa of CO2 and nitrous oxide emissions by recovering useful energy from waste that would otherwise have been landfilled.
Planning obligations placed on the Southwark integrated waste facility, which handles the entire borough’s waste, required that carbon emissions were managed effectively according to the renewables obligation.
SELCHP represented a viable, nearby alternative and avoided landfill’s negative carbon impact. Extensive consultation was required with leaseholders on affected estates regarding their heat supply as well as neighbouring authorities, utility companies, the highway authority, Rail for London and TFL and the Council’s existing heating contractors.
Inside eight months, 3.2m of underground pipework was laid and linked to heat exchangers to deliver the heat to four boiler houses on local estates.[/one_half_last]
The scheme delivers heating and hot water to residents – the price will not increase above that of gas throughout the 25 year contract. It has attracted interest from other local authorities and is an exemplar of energy from waste solutions in the UK inner city. CHP supports national and regional policies on sustainability and climate change and is backed by Defra and DECC.
Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, commented: “It is fantastic that SELCHP will be providing low carbon, low cost heating to homes through a new heat network providing London with a more secure, sustainable, cost-effective energy supply.”
Environmental responsibility, sustainable development and social wellbeing are central to the Veolia/Southwark partnership which began in 1998. Southwark Council’s Energy and Carbon Reduction Strategy was the primary driver for the scheme.
Adrian Moody – Resident – “The waste gets collected on Fridays and comes back as heat through the community heating system – I think diverting waste from landfill is a good thing.”
Estelle Brachlianoff, Veolia Executive Vice-President for UK & Ireland added: “The great news is there is capacity for more buildings to join the Southwark network and interested customers, particularly in nearby Canada Water, which is undergoing redevelopment.”[/one_half_last]