Chief executive Vianney Vales said "Wastefront’s work is timely and urgent". Credit: Wastefront

Environment Agency all-clear for Wastefront

The Norwegian tyre recycling firm has been granted an environmental permit for its flagship site at the Port of Sunderland, representing an investment of £100m.

In July, the business announced a strategic partnership with energy storage infrastructure provider VTTI, which is backed by Vitol, IFM Investors and the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, to invest in new sites.

That deal will back the Sunderland scheme with an initial tranche of £32m. With the scheme now approved, Wastefront intends to have the Sunderland plant fully operational by 2026.

Wastefront said that it will produce low carbon maritime and road transport fuels from Sunderland site, while recovered carbon black could be recycled back into the tyre industry.

Chief executive Vianney Vales said: “Wastefront’s work is timely and urgent; our blueprint will solve the disposal of an estimated 31m metric tonnes of end-of-life tyres annually, which is currently a concerningly dense source of both emissions and waste. Our blueprint will reduce emissions and bring circularity to heavy industry, at a scale not seen before.

“We are therefore delighted to have been granted an environmental permit for our Sunderland site – it’s a vital step on the journey to having the site fully operational by 2026. The entire team can now focus on starting construction and investing further in Sunderland.”

The Environment Agency’s full decision can be viewed online.

Matthew Hunt, director at Port of Sunderland, added: “We are delighted that Wastefront has received an environmental permit for its world-first tyre recycling plant here at Port of Sunderland.

“Representing an investment of over £100mn, once completed, the facility will represent a critical piece of UK infrastructure, creating highly skilled jobs for local people at the Port and significantly consolidating further our position as an investment location of choice for the ever-growing circular economy.”

  • A fuller explanation of the processes to be employed at the Port of Sunderland project can be found in our July story, when Sunderland was revealed as Wastefront’s desired location.

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