Strategic Rail Partnership:
Rail transfer stations connect Manchester and Leeds to Biffa facility
29 March 2018
Biffa plc (‘Biffa’ or ‘the Group’), a leading UK integrated waste management company, announces its strategic partnership with GB Railfreight (‘GBRf’’) to expand its rail hub network for the transportation of inactive waste. Biffa recently opened a transfer station in Manchester with a similar site in Leeds to follow in the near future.
The partnership with GBRf will initially focus on connecting the Northern cities of Manchester and Leeds with Biffa’s landfill facility in Roxby, near Scunthorpe. When fully operational these two strategic rail links alone are expected to facilitate the transportation of c.250,000 tonnes of inactive waste annually, the equivalent of approximately 16,000 truck journeys.
The development of a rail hub network is in line with Biffa’s stated strategy of developing its infrastructure and innovating its customer service offering to meet an evolving market dynamic and customer demand, including continued investment in recycling and other waste processing technologies.
As presented in Biffa’s ‘The Reality Gap (2017)’ report on the future of the UK waste market, while levels of recycling have improved substantially, landfill continues to play a fundamental and long-term role in the waste hierarchy to deal with those wastes which are non-combustible and non-recyclable. There is no alternative form of disposal for such waste, yet current landfill capacity is rapidly diminishing.
With fewer and fewer accessible landfill sites in operation, waste is now travelling a significant distance from source to disposal. In some regions rail transportation provides an economically viable means of facilitating the movement of waste, enabling Biffa to better leverage its existing landfill network and innovate its customer offering accordingly whilst also providing significant environmental advantages over road transportation. The Group continues to closely examine other regions of the UK where rail might provide similar advantages.
In honour of the partnership, GBRf will operate a red-liveried locomotive The Flying Dustman to reflect Biffa’s iconic brand, unveiled in a ceremony yesterday at York station.
Mick Davis, Managing Director of Resource Recovery & Treatment Division at Biffa, said:
“The partnership with GBRf marks another step forward in our strategy to develop our waste management infrastructure and innovate our customer offering. By increasing the mobility of inactive waste, rail transportation will enhance our service offerings from our existing landfill network whilst also providing significant environmental benefits compared to road transportation.”
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Biffa is a leading UK-based integrated waste management business. The Group operates across the breadth of the waste management value chain, including the collection, treatment, processing and disposal of waste and recyclable materials, as well as related work in the production and sale of energy derived from waste and the sale of recovered commodities such as paper, glass, metals and plastic. Biffa’s customer base for these services includes local authorities (which includes the collection of waste from households), large corporates and SMEs, and purchasers of end-product commodities and energy. The Group’s services are organised across four operating divisions: Industrial & Commercial; Municipal; Resource Recovery & Treatment (RR&T); and Energy. In FY 2017, the Group’s total revenue was £990.4 million and its Underlying EBITDA was £137.7 million. Biffa was admitted to trading on the London Stock Exchange’s main market for listed securities in October 2016 under the ticker “BIFF”. For more information visit www.biffa.co.uk