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Half the UK renewable energy targets could be met by energy from waste by 2020

Energy from waste (EfW) technologies could help the UK meet nearly half of its renewable energy targets by 2020, according to a new study, sponsored by West Midlands renewable energy consultancy and equipment provider, Geotech with the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management. 

The study by Cranfield University graduate Kofi Apea Adu-Gyamfi considers how the UK could use EfW technologies to meet the EU Renewable Energy Directive, which binds it to generating at least 15 per cent of its energy mix from renewable sources by 2020. 

According to the study, the use of biomethane in transportation fuel and the implementation of small-scale EfW facilities - such as gasification - at community level would not only support the energy infrastructure but it would also offer significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. 

Adu-Gyamfi's study concludes that, depending on the pace of investment and the availability of suitable feedstock, the use of EfW technologies could contribute up to half of the UK renewables target in the next ten years. 

Sponsored by Leamington Spa-based firm Geotech, and run as part of the CIWM's Professional Awards programme, the paper is the first to win the Geotech / CIWM bursary award and highlights the importance of developing a suitable EfW infrastructure in the UK. 

West Midlands regional development agency, AWM, operates an Environmental Technologies Cluster, focusing on promoting renewable energy and waste technologies in the region. AWM Business Development Manager, Gareth Stanley, welcomed the study and said he was pleased it has been made possible thanks to the support of a West Midlands business. 

He explained: "The West Midlands is working towards becoming a UK centre for the low carbon industry, but progress depends on the innovation of businesses such as Geotech and individuals like Kofi. We're hoping that the report will add further weight to the energy from waste agenda, which we know has the scope for bringing business growth, investment and jobs to our region." 

Geotech's Managing Director, Steve Billingham, added: "We're extremely pleased and proud to be associated with Kofi's report, which has identified a series of important findings and conclusions. Energy from waste is an important aspect of the UK's energy generation strategy and the next step is turning these findings into action and, eventually, industry growth." 

For more information on Geotech and the Geotech / CIWM Award visit: 
www.geotech.co.uk