Vernéa, new integrated facility for energy recovery from municipal solid waste and assimilated waste of Puy-de-Dôme and northern part of Haute Loire (FR)


The commissioning of VERNEA, one of the most innovative waste treatment facilities in France, allows for energy recovery and biological recovery from the 230,000 tonnes of waste annually produced on VALTOM’s territory. Hence VALTOM (1) the owner of the plant will be able to achieve a recovery rate from waste of 70% against 35% previously.

A coherent set of complementary treatment processes integrated into a single concept, almost unique in France


VERNEA processes 230,000 tonnes of waste collected from 650,000 inhabitants of the territory of VALTOM. This makes VERNEA, the second -in capacity- integrated multi processes treatment centre for household waste in France. This plant combines innovative technologies in order to develop optimal treatment for each type of waste. The energy produced is partly used to operate the plant while the surplus exported to the ERDF grid is equivalent to electricity consumption of 70,000 inhabitants. 6,500 tonnes of high quality compost are also produced to be used as fertiliser and specifically in agriculture.
VINCI Environnement was able to provide a comprehensive and innovative response by organising a coherent set of complementary processes on the same site. The main principle of the concept is to realise a fine sorting of the waste into 3 categories: organic waste, burnable waste, recyclable waste and materials.

The organised sequence of several treatment processes allows optimal recovery per type of waste:


A fully automated Mechanical Sorting Unit reduces the tonnage sent to landfill and enhances the recovery from each type of waste. The waste is sorted and separated into three fractions: plastics and metals on one hand, organic waste on the other hand. The ‘wet’ organic fraction is directly sent to the ‘biological stabilisation’ area where it will be transformed into a stable residue to be disposed in landfill. The ‘dry’ high calorific value (HCV) fraction, together with shredded bulky waste and C&I waste brought by the delegate, is routed to the energy from waste unit to produce electricity.
A Biological Unit is processing the green waste and kitchen waste into a high quality compost used as fertiliser, specifically in agriculture.
An Anaerobic Digestion Unit uses the fermentable portion of the waste to produce on one hand biogas then converted into electricity in the energy recovery unit, and on the other hand residual digestate then processed into compost in the composting area of the site.
An Energy from Waste Unit incinerates 150,000 tonnes per year of dry household waste issued from the mechanical sorting unit, producing :
Enough electricity to feed the needs of 70,000 people.
Metals (ferrous and nonferrous) directed to their respective recycling industries;
Bottom ash i.e. the inert fraction of the waste recycled as road embankments.

A facility involving state of the art know how of French waste treatment and construction works

Construction and operation of the plant during 20 years was entrusted by the VALTOM (1) to SITA Suez Environnement under a public service delegation contract. For the construction of the plant, SITA relied on the expertise of two VINCI Construction France subsidiaries each acting on different lots, yet in charge of the coordination of the design and build on the whole plant. Chantiers Modernes and Dumez-Lagorsse did the civil works part, while VINCI Environnement supplied the two process lots, energy form waste and MBT/AD.
(1) VALTOM: Waste Management Authority of Puy de Dôme Department
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