Covanta’s waste-to-energy plant in Ireland prepares for startup

By Anna Simet | January 27, 2017

Covanta Energy Inc.’s 58–MW waste-to-energy plant in Dublin, Ireland, is on track for first-fire in March.

Director of Operations Thomas Ericksen said staffing of the plant is nearly complete, and the plant is currently undergoing commissioning. “We’re walking down systems and beginning to get them started up in preparation for our first fire, which will be in March,” he said.

Construction of the facility began in Q4 2014.  A public-private partnership between Covanta and Dublin City Council, the facility was designed by EPC contractor Hitachi Zosen Inova and will process approximately 600,000 metric tons of waste annually, powering around 80,000 homes.

The plant been designed with technology and infrastructure to provide enough heat to meet the needs of over 50,000 homes when a district heating system is built in the future, Ericksen added.

At peak construction, the facility had upward of 1,300 people working on site. “Now that we’re finishing up, the numbers are coming down,” Ericksen said. “We’re just about staffed up on the operations side. We have about 45 of the 54 people needed on board, and we have another 10 more employees that have been selected, we’re just working on onboarding them.”

Ericksen said construction went smoothly and remained on schedule, and despite being only the second waste-to-energy plant built in Ireland, the quality, education and experience of employees hired to operate the facility have exceeded his expectations.

Watch for the March issue of Biomass Magazine for an extended feature article on the Dublin Waste-to-Energy Facility.