RPS delivers complete waste solutions by providing industry-leading expertise. The multi-disciplinary nature of our business means we can support our clients through every stage of the project lifecycle from planning through to design.

Our in-depth understanding of the waste management processes and cutting edge Architectural and Engineering design ensure planning is achieved and technology is incorporated efficiently while cost effective buildability is considered from the outset.

RPS have acted for local authorities supporting PFI procurements, waste management companies bidding for contracts, technology providers and civil contractors on a wide range of waste projects including Energy From Waste, Mechanical Biological Treatment, Material Recovery, Transfer Stations and Recycling Centres.

Case Studies

Buckinghamshire County Council

Buckinghamshire County Council Waste PFI Buckinghamshire County Council Waste PFI

RPS acted as Technical & Planning adviser to support the Buckinghamshire Waste procurement project. The contract included the development of an Energy from Waste Facility and two Waste Transfer Stations.

During the procurement process, RPS acted for the Authority providing Planning and Environmental support and evaluating bidders' submissions both in terms of technical content and planning delivery. We also undertook site investigation work on one of the transfer station sites to assess ground contamination and propose mitigation to enable development. Once the Preferred Bidder had been appointed we then reviewed the planning and permit applications, a role which is continuing through discharge of conditions.

Our architects are also now working on the detailed design of the Energy from Waste facility.

Hassockrigg Clinical Waste Facility

Hassockrigg Clinical Waste Facility Hassockrigg Clinical Waste Facility, near Shotts

Healthcare Environmental Services Ltd

RPS was commissioned to undertake and manage the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and planning application for the relocation of an existing clinical waste treatment facility.

The existing facility treated waste via steam autoclaving to render it harmless for transfer to landfill for disposal. However, the revised proposals introduced advanced thermal treatment technologies in order to improve the efficiency of the business by avoiding the need to treat waste elsewhere.

Through the identification of appropriate mitigation, RPS successfully demonstrated in the EIA that the proposed facility would have no significant adverse environmental effects, a position accepted by the Council and statutory consultees.

The application was recommended for approval but was refused by Committee, which resulted in our appointment to appeal the decision.

Integrated Waste Management Facility

Integrated Waste Management Facility Integrated Waste Management Facility, Southwark


RPS provided a multi-disciplinary role including Planning and Environmental services for this facility including Mechanical Biological Treatment, Waste Transfer Station, Household Waste Recycling Centre, Material Recycling Facility and Visitor Centre on congested former gas works site in London.

We undertook the planning application and coordination of the EIA. In addition, RPS were responsible for producing all of the studies included within the EIA including Air Quality, Hydrology, Ground Conditions, Ecology, Noise, Transport and Archaeology.

Planning consent was achieved in just 14 months. The Environmental Permit application was also handled by our team.

During the enabling works, RPS also undertook all Civil Engineering design which included lowering the level of the site, dealing with contaminated soil and constructing retaining walls at the site boundary resulting in over 50 party wall agreements which again RPS managed.

Materials Recovery Centre

Materials Recovery Centre Materials Recovery Centre, Merseyside


RPS provided detailed designs for this flagship 7,000m2 Materials Recovery Facility which houses complex process equipment for the sorting and recovery of dry recyclables including glass, plastic bottles, cardboard, cans and paper.

The building was designed to meet DEFRA's guidelines for major waste management facilities.

The exterior reflects the industrial nature of the building in the architect's specification of its distinctive palette, with particular attention paid to the striking feature roof with 8m overhangs. However, natural light is maximised inside by the use of Reglit glass installed around its perimeter.

The building realised an 'Excellent' BREEAM rating and has a number of A+ rated BRE materials on the external envelope, including cedar timber cladding, whilst stringent noise restrictions are mitigated with enhanced acoustic detailing and insulation.

The client's brief included an integrated Visitor and Education Centre located inside the building on a dedicated elevated and enclosed viewing gallery around the internal perimeter walls. This affords an uninterrupted view of the recycling machines below.

Mechanical Biological Treatment Plant

Mechanical Biological Treatment Plant Mechanical Biological Treatment Plant (MBT), Cambridgeshire


RPS provided Architecture, Civil & Structural Engineering, Building Services and Lead Designer services for this MBT plant.

The plant handles up to 200,000 tonnes of domestic waste a year, separating the recyclable materials and composting the biodegradable element, which is then sold to the public.

The facility incorporates a reception hall and preparation building along with a visitor & education centre and, with a high emphasis on recycling, was designed with sustainability at the top of the agenda. The design included sustainable urban drainage, rainwater harvesting, recycled floor coverings, recyclable ceiling tiles, clay-based paint, sustainable timber joinery, solar heating and low emissivity glass.

The Waterbeach site was awarded the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) 2007 Award for Climate Change and it is the first time a waste facility has ever won such an accolade.

The facility forms an integral part of Donarbon's (now Amey Cespa) long term PFI partnership with Cambridgeshire County Council.

Waste Bio-drying and Pyrolysis

Waste Bio-drying and Pyrolysis, Kettering

Think Greenergy Ltd

RPS CgMs is retained by Think Greenergy Ltd to provide specialist waste planning advice.

Think Greenergy Ltd has planning permission to develop a five module pyrolysis facility utilising solid recovered fuel (produced from waste). This permission sees 50,000 tonnes of SRF being pyrolysed each year generating electricity that will be fed into the National Grid.

RPS CgMs is preparing the application for the necessary Environmental Permit, providing an Expert Witness at a forthcoming Environment Agency, Hearing and all other planning and environmental advice as required. The role involves liaison with the regulatory bodies and preparation of detailed and complex legal submissions relating to site operations.