Illustration of North London Heat and Power facility; Illustration of North London Heat and Power facility;

North London Heat and Power Project, London

Embedding sustainability into the planning and delivery of north London's new sustainable waste hub

The North London Heat and Power Project (NLHPP) is North London Waste Authority's (NLWA) ambitious £1.2bn plan to redevelop the more than 50-year-old Edmonton EcoPark, providing flagship recycling and waste management facilities for north London’s residents. The new substantially more efficient facility is a major investment in infrastructure for the circular economy and another step towards more affordable, reliable and sustainable energy.

As sustainability and environmental advisors, we’re helping NLWA realise its vision “to create a waste management facility in which local communities take pride, which demonstrates value and is a model for public sector project delivery.” This began with our work during the planning phase and has continued into our programme management role. We provided strategic and project delivery management advice across the programme via its Programme Office functionality by utilising multiple specialist roles to deliver cost and commercial management, environmental assurance, transport assurance and health, safety and wellbeing advice. We have helped the NLWA to shape the delivery phase, moving into future decommissioning of the old facility.

In addition to the waste management facilities, the project involves the construction of EcoPark House, a completely off-grid education centre where visitors can find out more about the circular economy and how to reduce the carbon impact of their waste.

Project Summary

835,000 tonnes of waste have been diverted from landfill

127,000homes powered from 78 megawatt of heat and power

60,000homes and businesses receiving hot water and heating

Realising NLWA’s vision for the facility

Arup has been working with NLWA for over a decade and successfully delivered the Development Consent Order (DCO) application for this nationally significant infrastructure project.

Our multi-disciplinary team led the preparation of the scheme through an iterative process of design development, public consultation, and engagement with a range of stakeholders including local authorities and community groups. We responded to the findings of the public consultation and addressed the environmental challenges to ensure the design and delivery of the facility is as sustainable as possible.

We prepared the environmental and transport assessments, along with technical documents including the Sustainability Statement, Design and Access Statement and Code of Construction Practice. This complex application was prepared in less than 16 months ensuring that the project was on track to meet the overall construction programme. The DCO was granted by the UK Secretary of State on 24 February 2017.

Illustration of the future Edmonton EcoPark layout Illustration of the future Edmonton EcoPark layout
The new facility will support the development of sustainable solutions in managing waste.

In 2019, works began on site and Arup was appointed as delivery partner, embedded within the client team to provide multi-disciplinary programme and project management. Our role is to define and implement the overarching programme approach and governance processes, and provide specific schedule, risk, information and cost management, as well as sustainability, environmental and health and safety expertise supported by regular reporting.

We provide sustainability oversight and assurance across carbon, circular economy, waste, noise and air quality.

Aislinn Crawford, Sustainability Consultant at Arup, talking about carbon reduction
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Exceeding sustainability commitments

Overseen by Arup’s programme management and environmental team, the project has already exceeded or is on track to exceed many of the environmental benefits the NLHPP DCO and Sustainability Statement committed to deliver during construction. For example, the project has committed to achieving:

 A minimum of BREEAM Very Good which has been achieved for EcoPark House and RRF. The project is now targeting BREEAM Excellent for EcoPark House and RRF through a 20% increase in solar panels, green roof, the introduction of the off-grid system, battery storage and ground source heating pumps.

 85% diversion of construction and demolition waste from landfill, with a stretch target of 95%. To date 99% of construction and demolition waste has been diverted.

Arup’s Environmental Assurance Team has been an important partner throughout the delivery of the North London Heat and Power Project. Arup have provided critical support throughout the NLHPP programme thanks to a great relationship, driving a strong commitment to sustainability across the project. ” Jacqueline Fitzgerald Principal Technical Assurance Officer, NLWA

Embedding sustainability best practice and innovation

Proactive and beyond compliance behaviours, collaboration and innovation, working towards delivering the most sustainable facility possible, are all embedded into the project by NLWA, and its partners Arup, AECOM, WSP, Grimshaw, Ramboll, Stephenson Harwood, Adams Hendry, ACCIONA and Taylor Woodrow.

Promoting sustainability innovation, best practice and collaboration across the programme has been led by a specific innovation workstream, driven by Arup and embedded into construction contracts. Regular environment and sustainability workshops are held to promote collaboration across project partners and identify opportunities for innovations that will drive more sustainable outcomes. To date, over 50 sustainability innovations have been implemented, enabling beyond compliance delivery.

James Bellinger, Associate Air Quality Consultant at Arup, talking about air quality
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We need major capital infrastructure projects to be delivered sustainably as is being demonstrated by the North London Heat and Power Project. Our role as trusted advisor for multiple stages of the project lifecycle has been to help ensure strong and effective delivery discipline, governance and stakeholder management whilst ensuring that NLWA has an appropriate level of control and can satisfy the specific requirements of a public sector project. ” Douglas Chisholm Project Director, Arup


Winner of ‘Best Sustainable Brownfield Infrastructure Scheme’ and ‘Best Public Sector Brownfield Project’ at Environment Analyst Brownfield Awards 2023

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