If approved, the new facility would form part of a network of proposed facilities turning food waste into green energy, could create jobs in the town and drastically reduce Lancashire’s reliance on landfill.
Following a previous public consultation in 2019, SUEZ were awarded planning permission to replace the current resource recovery park in Darwen with a modern energy recovery centre. However, due to a recent change in market conditions, they are now also working on plans for an anaerobic digestion facility – a food waste processing plant.
Currently, it is not required for local authorities to have segregated food waste collections, yet the Government have said that this will become policy in the coming years, in accordance with the Environment Bill. If approved, the anaerobic digester at Darwen would form part of a network of key facilities across the country to turn food waste across the region into reliable, renewable energy and compost-like soil-improver.
Having permission to build either an energy recovery centre or an anaerobic digestion facility would mean that, when Government policy on food waste collections and market conditions are clearer, SUEZ will be well placed to promptly build whichever facility is the most appropriate to meet the future needs of Darwen, Blackburn and the wider regionThe proposed Darwen anaerobic digestion SUEZ plant - credit SUEZ UK
SUEZ want to hear your views and have launched a public consultation today that will run for three weeks to Sunday 25 September. For more information on the proposed plans, what the proposals could mean for you and your community and to access the feedback form visit our dedicated planning page.
If you would prefer a hardcopy feedback form, require it in a different format, or have any questions, please contact the project team by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, by calling 01254 819 700 or by FREEPOST: Planning feedback, PO Box 6112, SUEZ House, 13-35 Grenfell Road, Maidenhead.
John Wilkinson, Regional Director SUEZ recycling and recovery UK said: “SUEZ recycling and recovery UK are proud to operate in Blackburn with Darwen and are keen to invest in the development of our existing resource recovery park on Lower Eccleshill Road in Darwen, not only to protect existing jobs but to also create new jobs. As government policy on waste and resources evolves, we have to anticipate the likely need for waste management facilities.
“Whilst we have planning permission for an energy recovery centre on the site we are also working on plans for an anaerobic digestion facility to process food waste. We are working and will continue to work closely with Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council to reduce food waste in the area as much as possible and want to ensure that any food that is wasted is put to good use. If planning permission was to be granted for an anaerobic digester we would then be well placed to move forward quickly when government policy and market conditions are clearer to build the most appropriate facility to meet Blackburn with Darwen’s future needs.”