Energy Transition

Hamburg building Europe's state-of-the-art recycling centre

24 April 2023
Plant to recover recyclable materials and generate heat and electricity from 2025

The foundation stone for the new “Centre for Resources and Energy” (ZRE) was laid Wednesday (April 19, 2023) on the site of the former Stellinger Moor waste recycling plant. On completion in 2025, ZRE will recover around 9,600 tons of recyclable materials every year generating electricity and heat through thermal waste treatment. That should cover about half of district heating for households in Hamburg, according to Stadtreinigung Hamburg (SRH). ZRE should also help conserves resources in Hamburg. 

Generating climate-friendly heat in winter and electricity in summer

"Waste is a resource that we should use as efficiently as possible," said Jens Kerstan, Senator for the Environment, Climate, Energy and Agriculture. ZRE recovers recyclables such as metal, glass, plastic and paper from household waste and generates climate-friendly heat and energy from the residue. "ZRE allows us to secure long-term disposal, to phase out coal from Hamburg's district heating supply and to achieve energy independence," he added. The plant will generate up to 75 megawatts of district heating in winter and will supply up to 22 megawatts of electricity in summer.

Multi-stage waste sorting plant  

"We will soon supply around half of the district heating for households and become the largest supplier of recycling needs in Hamburg," said Prof. Dr. Rüdiger Siechau, Managing Director of SRH. Christian Heine, spokesman for Hamburger Energiewerke, added: "Apart from the Hafen energy park, ZRE is an essential heat supplier and will enable us to replace the Wedel coal-fired power plant by 2025 with mostly climate-neutral heat sources." A 2.2 kilometre pipeline is being built to link up ZRE to the urban heating network. ZRE's multi-stage system sorts out recyclable materials from residual waste first. The remaining, non-recyclable residual waste is then sorted for incineration lines. Around 145,000 tonnes of household waste are to be sorted annually to achieve the highest level of recycling.

Sources and further information

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