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London waste-to-energy could power 2 million homes

dustbinsEvery eight days, London produces enough municipal waste to fill up Canary Wharf … and city officials believe much of that garbage is too valuable to be buried in landfill sites.

Members of the London Assembly Environment Committee plan to meet tomorrow to investigate how the capital could put its trash to better use through waste-to-renewable-energy technologies.

Officials believe residual waste and biomass provide significant energy and heat opportunities for London.

Energy and heat from residual waste and biomass provides significant opportunities for London.  If all of the capital’s waste that cannot be recycled and currently goes to landfill was used to generate energy, it could power up to two million houses and heat up to 625,000 homes, according to estimates from the London Waste and Recycling Board Business Plan.

Starting at 10 a.m. tomorrow in City Hall, the committee will look at the environmental and social impacts of locally produced energy and heat and the role of the mayor in promoting this technology.

Among those set to attend the meeting, which can be viewed by Webcast, are:

  • John Gibbs of PricewaterhouseCoopers;
  • Mark Collins Thomas of Environmental Power International;
  • Stephen Horrax of Enviros Consulting Limited;
  • Mike Tregent of the Environment Agency;
  • Janine Freeman, head of the Sustainable Gas Group at National Grid;
  • Emma Smyth of the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames;
  • Michael Warhurst, senior waste & resources campaigner for Friends of the Earth; and
  • Liz Mullis of the University Of Oxford.

The committee will also receive a briefing from Environment Agency Thames Regional Director Howard Davidson  and James Gibson, flood risk technical specialist, about water policy in London.

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