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CEFC congratulates Avertas Energy on WA energy from waste milestone

8 March 2019

The CEFC today congratulated Avertas Energy on starting construction of Australia’s first large-scale thermal energy from waste facility, being built at Kwinana in Western Australia.

The CEFC has committed up to $90 million to the innovative project, which will generate clean energy by processing around 400,000 tonnes per year of household ‘red bin’ and commercial and industrial residual waste.

Avertas Energy marked the start of construction with a sod turning ceremony officiated by Western Australian Premier, the Honourable Mark McGowan MLA, and the Federal Minister for the Environment, The Honourable Melissa Price MP.

Read the Avertas Energy media release

CEFC Bioenergy Lead Mac Irvine said: “This is a major investment in cleaner energy and better waste management for WA, using proven technology to address the twin challenges of waste diversion from landfill and carbon emissions while at the same time recovering energy. 

“We see this energy from waste investment as an exciting model that can be used Australia-wide, benefiting local communities as well as the environment. We congratulate all those involved in bringing this landmark WA project an important step closer to delivery.”

The Avertas Energy plant is expected to cut 400,000 tonnes per year of carbon emissions, the equivalent to taking 85,000 cars off the road.

It will also export 36MW of baseload renewable electricity to the grid each year, sufficient to power more than 50,000 households.

Avertas Energy CEO Frank Smith said the facility represented a significant opportunity to reduce pressure on landfill capacity and create a new and reliable source of green power.

“We are proud to be supporting Western Australia to achieve its waste management and green energy goals, and we are committed to engaging with local communities throughout construction and once the facility is operating,” Mr Smith said.

Avertas Energy said that more than 800 jobs will be created over the course of the construction period, with 60 new full-time positions once the facility is operating. Acciona, which has been appointed to build the facility, has begun engaging with local sub-contractors about opportunities during construction.

In an Australian-first, Avertas Energy is implementing moving grate technology, which is already in use in some 2,000 facilities globally. In other countries, waste to energy is part of an overall solution for reducing landfill in conjunction with avoiding waste production, recycling and reuse. Waste managed by Avertas Energy will result in recovery of metallic materials that will be recycled and by-products that will be reused as construction materials.

Scheduled to open in 2021, the plant has 20-year waste supply agreements with the Rivers Regional Council and the City of Kwinana, supporting local waste management strategies. As the preferred supplier of baseload renewable energy, Avertas Energy will also support the green energy needs of the WA Local Government Association and its members.

The Avertas Energy Kwinana plant is a co-development between Macquarie Capital and Phoenix Energy and is owned by Macquarie Capital and Dutch Infrastructure Fund.