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OFT recommendations will help AD


ADBA Chairman and Lib Dem peer Lord Redesdale has welcomed the publication today [Thursday] of the OFT’s Market Study into Organic Waste.

The Market Study was prompted by the water regulator Ofwat, to explore what barriers exist to competition in the treatment of sewage sludge, and the involvement of Water and Sewage Companies in the treatment of other organic waste.

ADBA has been campaigning for changes which will help deliver the “huge increase” in anaerobic digestion promised by the coalition, and welcomed Ofwat’s decision to request the study.

The Market Study makes a series of recommendations to Ofwat and other bodies, focusing primarily on creating an economic environment which will help increase competition for Water and Sewage Companies and other waste treatment companies across the market.

Commenting, Lord Redesdale said:

I welcome the publication of the OFT’s Market Study, and would like to thank their team who have put so much work into it this year.


The Study recognises that competition both for sewage sludge as a feedstock for digestion is very limited, that water companies are largely not connected to the wider organic waste treatment market, and that changes have to be make water supply and treatment sustainable.


The OFT’s recommendations could help lead to huge rise in investment in Anaerobic Digestion from water sector, which will help the industry as a whole, and open up new opportunities for treating sewage sludge.


AD has a vital role in decarbonising energy production – particularly in areas which other renewables can’t reach, such as replacing fossil fuel gas in the grid – so I hope that implementing these recommendations will help the water sector become a significant investor in the industry.


Over the coming months, ADBA will present our view that urgent measures need to be taken by Ofwat to increase the AD in the water sector, and will discuss with the regulator how we move to a mature and competitive AD marketplace both inside and outside the water sector.

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