Energy recovery

How does it work?

Parc Adfer will produce enough energy to power over 30,000 UK homes.

Non-recyclable waste is used to heat water and create steam that turns a turbine. There are two types of energy generated by the process – electricity and heat. Instead of using coal or gas as fuel, Parc Adfer will use the residual waste that would otherwise have been sent to landfill.

We already have a number of measures in place to monitor and control emissions from Parc Adfer that have been tried and tested at operational facilities around the world. Importantly, Wheelabrator has agreed to undertake additional monitoring in conjunction with local councils.

Energy Recovery Process diagram – used by kind permission of Recycle for Wales brought to you by WRAP


  1. Materials that can be reused or recycled are removed by households.
  2. The remaining waste is transported in sealed trucks and tipped into a bunker inside a reception hall.
  3. A crane places the waste into a feed hopper. It then drops down a feed chute onto the grate.
  4. The action of the moving grate turns the waste to allow it to burn fully.
  5. Hot gases produced in the combustion process pass through a water tubed boiler where they are cooled, the heated water becomes steam.
  6. A turbine uses the steam to produce electricity for export to the National Grid.
  7. Heat generated could be used by nearby buildings or future developments.
  8. The gases from the boiler go through an extensive flue gas cleaning process.
  9. Particles and residues are filtered out to clean the flue gases.
  10. Materials collected by the air cleaning processes are stored in sealed units for further treatment.
  11. Plant emissions are monitored to ensure they meet strict environmental standards.
  12. The ash passes through an ash handling system.
  13. Magnets remove any remaining metals for recycling.
  14. The remaining ash is processed on site to produce a secondary aggregate which can be used by the construction industry.