We work with district and borough councils and the City of York to manage waste and improve resource recovery in our area.

Allerton Waste Recovery Park 

In October 2014, we signed the project agreement with Amey for the Allerton Waste Recovery Park project. 

The facility will process up to 320,000 tonnes of waste per year from York and North Yorkshire, providing a solution for treating our waste while turning it into a resource through several technologies:

  • A mechanical treatment plant receives waste and sorts out metal, paper, card, glass and plastics for recycling;
  • An anaerobic digestion plant treats the separated organic waste and produces a biogas which will generate renewable electricity;
  • An energy from waste plant treats the waste which remains after separation of the recyclables and treatment of organic waste, producing steam to feed an electricity generating turbine that will produce enough electricity to supply about 40,000 homes; and
  • There will also be a visitor and education centre for business, educational and community visits in association with the development and to facilitate waste awareness activities.

The facility will create around 70 permanent skilled and semi-skilled jobs and add millions of pounds to the York and North Yorkshire economy each year. It will also allow the York and North Yorkshire Waste Partnership to exceed its target of recycling 50 per cent of waste by 2020.

Construction progress

This facility is under construction at the current Allerton landfill and quarry site. The plant is expected to be fully operational in early 2018. You can find out more about the development by visiting the project website.

You can view a timelapse video of the construction here.

Allerton Park Landscape and Cultural Heritage Fund grants scheme

The planning agreement for Allerton Waste Recovery Park was signed in February 2013 and included proposals for a landscape and cultural heritage fund. We work with Two Ridings Community Foundation to deliver this fund.

The fund is designed to assist with projects which enhance the landscape, cultural heritage and biodiversity of the designated area of benefit around the facility. It also supports projects which mitigate the visual effects of the site within that same area.

There are three schemes available:

  • small grants between £100 and £1,000;
  • medium grants between £1,001 and £10,000; and
  • large grants between £10,001 and £50,000.

Applications for small grants are considered on an ongoing basis and there is no deadline. Applications to the medium and large grants scheme will be decided by a panel.

You can find more information and grant application deadlines by visiting the Two Ridings Community Foundation website.

Municipal waste strategy - frequently asked questions

One main treatment facility gives us the best economic and environmental solution. Other facilities will still be used for the management and local landfill of waste not suitable for treatment.

The facility will recover as much recyclable material from our waste as it is cost effective to do so. But the reality is, however much is recycled, there will always remain a proportion of the waste produced by homes and businesses which can only be disposed of by landfill or by incineration. 

Since landfill is no longer a financially or environmentally viable option, this material must be disposed of through a different way, such as the energy from waste technology that will be used at Allerton Waste Recovery Park.

Incinerator bottom ash is the material which comes out of the grate at the end of the energy from waste process. It is mostly a mix of ceramics, slag and glass.

The ash produced at the Allerton Waste Recovery Park will be recycled to create materials for the construction industry. There is an increasing market for these materials in highway construction, with several highway authorities emphasising use of recycled products. 

Air pollution control residues - often referred to as fly ash - is made up of lime, activated carbon and dust from the flue gases which are removed at the final stage of the energy for waste process. 

Fly ash is classified as hazardous waste. However, because the dust is alkaline, Allerton Waste Recovery Park has proposed to transport the residues by specialist sealed powder tankers to a landfill site (or sites) licensed to deal with hazardous waste. 

The plant will treat household waste which remains after recycling and sorting has taken place, plus a small amount of local commercial and industrial waste generated from shops, offices, restaurants and businesses.

As a waste disposal authority, the county council has a statutory duty to manage locally generated commercial and industrial waste collected by the waste collection authorities.

Amey will offer any spare capacity to local businesses for the disposal of commercial waste. This commercial waste will be indistinguishable from household waste or commercial waste already collected by district councils.

Amey's planning application included detailed assessments of the environmental impact of the proposal, including traffic movements and the visual impact on the landscape.

Amey has also been granted an environmental permit from the Environment Agency for Allerton Waste Recovery Park. Energy from Waste is a tried and tested technology and the emissions from Energy from Waste plants are subject to strict monitoring by the Environment Agency. If the plant fails to comply with the conditions of the permit which relate to emissions, it could lead to enforcement action being taken.

In September 2007, a contract notice was published in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) inviting companies to tender for a long-term contract to manage the final treatment of York and North Yorkshire's residual household waste.

Prior to this, the councils had worked together to prepare an outline business case which was submitted to the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). This document reflected the waste management position at that time and was the basis for the successful application for £65million Private Finance Initiative (PFI) credits.

The closing date for receipt of the outline solutions was December 2007 and in January 2008 a shortlist of four participating companies was produced. These companies were invited to submit detailed solutions to the councils. Once the solutions had been evaluated, two companies were taken forward. Amey was then selected as the councils' preferred bidder for the contract.

The councils worked closely with Defra and the Waste Infrastructure Delivery Programme to progress each stage of the project. Following the outcome of the Comprehensive Spending Review in October 2010, the councils received confirmation the project had retained the provisional allocation of credit support for the project.

Members of City of York Council and North Yorkshire County Council agreed to award a contract for the long-term management of waste to Amey in December 2010.

At its meeting on 30 October 2012, our planning and regulatory functions committee considered the report of the corporate director for business and environmental services on Amey's planning application for Allerton Waste Recovery Park. The committee heard representations from the public, local opposition groups and Amey. Members agreed with the report's recommendation and voted to approve the application. View the report from the planning committee meeting.

They also agreed with the report's recommendation that the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government should be consulted on the application and the committee's decision. The Secretary of State decided not to hold a public enquiry and the planning decision notice was issued on 14 February 2013.

An application was made for a judicial review of the planning decision. This was refused by the High Court in July 2013. The High Court's decision was then appealed and at a hearing at the Court of Appeal in London on 15 October 2013, the appeal was also refused.

Amey was granted an environmental permit from the Environment Agency in July 2013 and the judicial review period expired without challenge in October 2013.

On 21 February 2013, Defra withdrew £65million PFI credits allocation, however, the council worked with Amey to finalise funding for the project and financial close took place on 30 October 2014.

The Freedom of Information Act (2000) gives a general right of access to all types of 'recorded' information held by public authorities, sets out exemptions by which information may be withheld and places a number of obligations on public authorities. The councils have previously published information about the project and will continue to publish as much information as possible including contract documents (marginally redacted to protect commercially confidential information).

Useful downloads

Waste treatment documentation

Meeting videos

  • Video of planning committee decision meeting, 30 October 2012: The meeting can be viewed on YouTube in three parts (due to the length of the meeting) - part onepart two, and part three.
  • Video of extraordinary county council meeting , 24 September 2014: The county council held an extraordinary meeting where it endorsed the decision of the executive to proceed to financial close for the long-term waste contract, subject to the final costs being within the value for money envelope. The meeting can be viewed on YouTube in four parts (due to the length of the meeting) - part onepart twopart three, and part four. You can view minutes of the meeting here.

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