Raising finance remains biggest challenge in building residual waste infrastructure, says report


With 21.3 million tonnes of waste infrastructure having received planning consent, but not yet commenced construction, raising finance appears to be the barrier to getting it built, according to a new report from Eunomia.

The fourth issue of Eunomia’s Residual Waste Infrastructure Review, shows that in the unlikely event that all of this 21.3 million tonnes of treatment capacity was to be built today, it would exceed the available residual waste by 12 million tonnes.


Indeed, some regions such as the West Midlands and North East appear likely to have more treatment capacity than residual waste by 2014.

In the last six months since the last report, 2.7 million tonnes of capacity has been consented, while only 1 million tonnes of capacity has moved into the construction phase. Meanwhile, a further 1 million tonnes has exited the planning process without obtaining consent, having been either withdrawn or refused.

Eunomia principal consultant Adam Baddeley said: “The development pipeline for residual waste treatment is becoming increasingly complex, and the picture is changing – not least because of the information that we are making available through our review.

“With a lack of long-term bankable feedstock contracts to meet tight lending criteria, along with strong competition from incinerators on the continent, the prospects for reaching financial close on pure merchant plant have worsened.

“The risk of overcapacity remains, in some regions more strongly than others, but at a national level, these influences suggest that we may not reach full capacity until around 2017/18.”