Amsterdam’s waste emergency: 6 million euros provided but with new problems arising

The municipality of Amsterdam is willing to intervene to cover the debts of the Amsterdam waste treatment company AEB with six million euros, but for this to happen – NOS says – the administration wants some guarantees.

According to public television sources, a manager will be appointed to restructure the company’s debts and discussions with the municipality will continue for some time.

The waste treatment plant in Amsterdam, AEB, is struggling with major financial problems: due to maintenance delays, the company has been under close observation for some time. Two weeks ago, the waste processor stopped four of the six incineration lines.

The garbage is starting to accumulate and the increase in sewage sludge cannot be processed by the AEB for two weeks.

The association that brings together the waste transport companies has sounded the alarm: companies want guarantees that someone will pay for the waste they collect, now that they will not be incinerated for a while.

The six million put on the table by the municipality, however, does not convince transport companies.

However, financial assistance from the municipality to the AEB will not solve the problems of the Amstel, Gooi and Vecht sludge. Sewage sludge is processed in seven locations in the Netherlands. Until three years ago, Waterboards were able to export to Germany sludge that could not be processed by Dutch companies. But with the new rules that came into force in Germany, this is no longer possible.

Since then, Dutch sludge processors have been working at full capacity. Now that the AEB waste-to-energy plant can no longer process sludge, the six remaining processors have to pick up the extra work.

“In two weeks we will no longer be able to store the mud and so we hope the ministry will make deposits available because it is not an option for us to dump them in surface waters,” says Peter Smit, director of Amstel’s Waterboard, Gooi and Vecht.

The ministry says it is necessary first of all to look for alternative storage sites in the region.

Featured Image: Annabel [CC BY-SA]


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