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Biffa turns derelict land into emission reducing transport hub

06 • May • 2021

Biffa turns derelict land into emission reducing transport hub

Transporting waste by rail is a key strategic aim for Biffa which is working towards transporting 50% of all its waste by rail by 2025. Since it launched its strategic partnership with GBRf in 2018, over a million tonnes of waste have been transported by rail, saving more than one million tonnes of CO2 equivalent emissions from reaching the atmosphere.

06 May 2021

Biffa turns derelict land into emission reducing transport hub

Previously unused land in East London has been transformed into a transport hub, linking key waste sites with leading waste manager Biffa’s facilities by rail. The Renwick Road site opens today in partnership with GB Railfreight (GBRf) and will be able to transport 250,000 tonnes of waste from London by rail.

Transporting waste by rail is a key strategic aim for Biffa which is working towards transporting 50% of all its waste by rail by 2025. Since it launched its strategic partnership with GBRf in 2018, over a million tonnes of waste have been transported by rail, saving more than one million tonnes of CO2 equivalent emissions from reaching the atmosphere.

Mick Davis, Chief Operating Officer for Resources and Energy Division at Biffa said: “The opening of our new rail hub marks the next step in our strategic partnership with GBRf to increase our capacity for transportation by rail. It will help us reduce dependence on vehicles on the road and reduce the emissions we produce. The site was totally derelict when we took it on and amongst the rubbish and debris we cleared, we actually found some interesting items, including one and a half tonnes of World War Two bullets.”

John Smith, Managing Director at GBRf commented: “We are delighted to be working with Biffa on this project and our collaboration will see us move thousands of tonnes of waste in a sustainable way. This is the way forward if we are to reach the net zero carbon emission target by 2050 and we look forward to continuing our partnership with Biffa in the months and years to come to ensure more waste can be removed by rail.”

Biffa has spent £4.2 million developing the site, removing 14,000 tonnes of previously fly-tipped waste and debris. Renwick Road has always been a railway yard, with its earliest record dating back to 1864. It fell out of use in 1991 and has remained unused until now. Operating five trains a week, Renwick Road will transport waste from North and East London to sites at Roxby, Scunthorpe, Leeds and Manchester.

Benefits of transporting waste by rail:

  1. It helps manage waste more sustainably, taking vehicles off the road
  2. Transporting waste by rail reduces the number of emissions produced by vehicles – through its rail transportation Biffa has reduced its emissions by 75%
  3. Local communities can benefit as there is less traffic on the road

History

Biffa and GBRf have been working together since 2018 when they announced the partnership to transport more waste by rail. It came after the opening of a transfer station in Manchester in 2017 and one in Leeds in 2018.

-ENDS

Notes to Editors

For enquiries, please contact:

Houston

biffa@houston.co.uk / +44 (0)204 529 0549

About Biffa

Biffa has been at the forefront of the UK’s waste industry for over a hundred years, with operations that span the entire breadth of the waste management process including collection, reuse, recycling, treatment, disposal and energy generation. We exist to change the way people think about waste; to help people see the opportunities that exist when we manage our waste in the right way, and to make that happen. We understand the vital role we must play in helping the UK to address the climate emergency and deliver sustainable growth. This involves an ambitious investment programme in green economy infrastructure and low carbon collections, alongside an ongoing commitment to sector leadership in the health, safety and wellbeing of our people. Biffa is a Great British company. In FY20, the Group's total revenue was £1,102.8m and its Underlying EBITDA was £174.0m. We have been listed on the London Stock Exchange since October 2016 under the ticker "BIFF". In March 2020, Biffa entered the FTSE-250.

For more information visit www.biffa.co.uk/investors

About GB Railfreight

Founded in 1999 and headquartered in London, United Kingdom, GB Railfreight is the third largest rail freight operator in the United Kingdom, with a turnover expected to exceed £225 million in 2021. GB Railfreight is one of the fastest growing companies in the railway sector and transports goods for a wide range of customers.