East Dunbartonshire Council signs new deal in commitment to reducing its carbon 'food-print'

East Dunbartonshire Council has renewed a two-year contract to send its food waste to Scotland’s first large-scale recycling facility to be used to generate renewable energy.

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Deerdykes Bioresources Centre using anaerobic digestion to break down organic matter

The waste will continue to be sent to Scottish Water Horizons’ Deerdykes Bioresources Centre near Cumbernauld where it undergoes anaerobic digestion – a process which uses bacteria to break down organic matter.

Colin Lindsay, operations manager at Scottish Water Horizons, said: “A less sustainable alternative is to use comingled waste - mixing food and garden rubbish – which goes to composting.

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“This generates greenhouse gases – including methane – which are harmful to the environment. Sending waste to a food waste recycling facility which uses anaerobic digestion avoids this issue whilst generating sustainable energy.

“Last year East Dunbartonshire sent 3000 tonnes of food waste to us for processing, that’s the equivalent of more than a quarter of a million weekly food shops, reducing a massive 1850 tonnes of carbon.

“This has been a great effort in East Dunbartonshire’s to encouraging the public to separate their food waste, and we are confident through working together that we can build on that success.”

Ann Davie, the council’s depute chief executive, added: “We’re very proud of the fact that our residents have consistently been amongst the top recyclers in the country.

“By renewing this contract, we are demonstrating the council’s commitment to ensuring as much food waste as possible in East Dunbartonshire is turned into renewable energy and not sent to landfill.

“We are currently running a campaign to raise awareness locally of what items go in each of our bins to increase our area’s recycling even further.

"So far the response from our residents has been terrific which shows just how passionate they are about this issue.”

The Deerdykes Bioresources Centre has generated more than 50 GWh of green electricity – the equivalent of powering 13,500 homes for a year – since it opened in 2010.

The facility harnesses gas from food waste using anaerobic digestion to generate green energy using a combined heat and power engine.