Efforts to employ more than 400 construction staff in Fife are under way after it emerged work on a new energy-from-waste facility is to begin in February.
Brockwell Energy is pressing ahead with plans for the new incinerator at Westfield on the outskirts of Kinglassie after the proposals were initially unveiled over four years ago.
With a ban on sending waste to landfill just a few years away, the 240,000 tonne plant will help local authorities and businesses avoid any penalties by providing essential waste disposal capacity.
It is also being seen as a catalyst for the redevelopment of one of the largest derelict brownfield former coal mining sites in Central Scotland.
Switzerland-based Hitachi Inova Zosen (HZI) will design, build and operate the facility, with more than 400 jobs due to be created during the construction phase and 40 long-term skilled roles created once it is up and running early in 2025.
Neil Young, Brockwell Energy’s technical and operations director, commented: “After many years of hard work, we are delighted to have completed the financing and contracting to enable the construction of this facility.
“It has been a very challenging economic period and we are grateful for the continuing support of all the key stakeholders involved in the project, including Fife Council and Fife Council’s waste dispoal business, Cireco.”
Westfield was the site of one of the UK’s largest open cast coal mines.
Mining began in the 1950s and finished in the 1980s, but the site has been largely derelict since then.
Following the collapse of Scottish Coal in 2013, the site was acquired by Hargreaves Services and Brockwell was given an exclusive option to lease the site to develop a number of energy projects.
The company say the new energy-from-waste plant will generate significant activity on the site and will be able to offer cheap renewable heat and power to attract other industrial operators to invest in the site.
“Our long-term aim is to look at how we can locate other renewable energy schemes within the wider site to enhance our offering to the market and demonstrate our commitment to developing and investing in projects that meet our environmental and social governance criteria,” Young concluded.
Story by local democracy reporter Craig Smith