1st June 2023

Full-scale operations get underway at Newhurst ERF

Encyclis has begun full operations at Newhurst Energy Recovery Facility (ERF) following the successful completion of a three-year construction and commissioning project.


The facility, near Shepshed in Leicestershire, is the second in Encyclis’s planned portfolio of six Energy-from-Waste projects to be delivered on schedule following the start of commercial operations at Rookery South ERF, near Bedford, last year.

Encyclis managed the construction of Newhurst ERF, which it jointly owns with Biffa. The lead contractor was Hitachi Zosen Inova (HZI), which has delivered three plants for Encyclis since 2017.

Newhurst ERF is set to annually process 350,000 tonnes of non-recyclable waste, generating up to 42MW of sustainable baseload electricity and recovering residual ash and metals from the treatment process for reuse.

Encyclis CEO Owen Michaelson said: “The move into full commercial operations at Newhurst ERF is a credit to our teams, working with HZI to ensure completion as planned at the outset. Construction started in 2020, when we were all in the grip of the pandemic, and to have achieved delivery on time despite all those headwinds is the result of a remarkable effort by everyone involved in the project.”

The start of full operations at Newhurst ERF brings Encyclis’ installed capacity across the UK, Ireland and Italy to 1.8 million tonnes per annum.

Mick Davis, Biffa’s Chief Operating Officer - Resources & Energy, said: “Biffa has a leading role to play in developing the recycling and Energy-from-Waste facilities that the UK needs if it is to become a low-carbon, resource-efficient economy.

Energy recovery is a lower carbon alternative to landfill for the treatment of waste that can’t be reduced or recycled and will have a vital role to play for many years as a contributor to the transition to net zero.

“Reaching this milestone at Newhurst, along with our ambitious investments in recycling, are vital steps in the delivery of our strategic investment plans. We look forward to

working with our partners to further reduce the UK’s reliance on landfill or export for managing the country’s non-recyclable waste.”

HZI’s Project Director, Ingo Eifert, added: “I want to congratulate HZI’s project teams, Encyclis, and all supply contractors for their commitment over Newhurst’s construction and commissioning phases. Since 2020, we’ve had to overcome the challenges of Covid 19, extreme weather and supply chain issues due to the war in Ukraine. By applying innovative and carefully managed logistics, I’m delighted that HZI has handed over this plant to Encyclis on time.”

The facility achieved first fire on waste in November 2022 as part of the commissioning process and the completion of testing and optimisation enabled commercial takeover.

The project created more than 600 jobs at the peak of construction, with 50 people now employed by Encyclis at the facility to ensure 24/7 operations.


Encyclis provides energy recovery services which turn residual waste into low-carbon electricity, heat and other reusable materials. Formerly known as Covanta Europe, our state-of-the-art energy recovery facilities support the transition to a circular economy by making productive use of residual waste that would otherwise go to landfill. With over 200 employees, our portfolio includes three facilities in the UK and Ireland, which operate 24/7 to collectively divert 1.5 million tonnes of waste from landfill every year and generate enough electricity to power nearly 300,000 homes. Further facilities are currently under construction. With expertise stretching back over three decades, extensive partnerships and continuous innovation, Encyclis provides a progressive solution for waste management.


With over 100 years of expertise, Biffa is an established leader of sustainable waste management in the UK. Our purpose is to change the way people think about waste and our team of more than 10,000 key workers provide unrivalled end-to-end waste and recycling solutions for thousands of businesses and millions of households each day.  

Underpinned by our low carbon collection network, we’re at the forefront of enabling the UK circular economy by continuing to build our plastic recycling capacity, investing in energy recovery and growing the amount of surplus produce we redistribute through Company Shop.   Since 2002 we’ve cut our carbon emissions by 70% and aim to be net zero by 2050. Our long-standing Biffa Award Biffa Award programme and our proud partnership with WasteAid WasteAid also contribute to major environmental benefits for the UK and beyond. Visit biffa.co.uk or find us on Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter.   

Hitachi Zosen Inova

Zurich-based green-tech company Hitachi Zosen Inova (HZI) is a global leader in solutions for energy transition and circular economy including Energy from Waste (EfW) and Renewable Gas (RG), operating as part of the Hitachi Zosen Corporation Group. HZI acts as project developer, technology supplier and engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor delivering complete turnkey plants and system solutions for thermal and biological waste recovery. Its solutions are based on efficient and environmentally sound technologies, are thoroughly tested, and can be flexibly adapted to customer requirements. HZI’s Service Solutions Group combines its own research and development with comprehensive manufacturing and erection capabilities to provide support throughout a plant’s entire plant cycle. HZI works for customers ranging from established waste management companies to up-and-coming partners in new markets. Its innovative and reliable solutions have been part of more than 1,600 reference projects worldwide. Please visit www.hz-inova.com.