Waste-to-energy solutions market is gaining huge popularity as it involves producing energy from waste and reducing the dependence on fossil fuel for energy generation.
However, the waste-to-energy incineration process is expensive as the cost of building incineration plants is high. In addition, these waste incineration plants can take a toll on the health of people located near these plants and can cause respiratory problems, reproductive abnormalities, high risk of cancer, and other health issues.
Governments across the emerging markets are eager to tap into waste-to-energy solutions. But many are learning that it takes more than the granting of licenses to create economically and environmentally sustainable WTE solutions.
What is Waste to Energy?
Waste-to-energy (WTE) is a process of generating energy from waste and reducing the dependence on fossil fuel such as coal for energy generation. Waste-to-energy solutions use sustainable method to reduce the emission of harmful greenhouse gases such as methane and carbon dioxide, prevent waste from entering the landfill, and curb the emission of methane gas from landfill. These plants burn the garbage or trash with the help of a boiler to produce steam which is used to generate electricity. Waste-to-energy solutions process helps in reducing air pollution by removing pollutants from gas combustion and preventing them from entering the smokestack.
A wide range of waste-to-energy solutions ─ some already used in developed markets ─ is expected to be implemented in Southeast Asia in the years to come. ‘Fluidized bed’ is a cleaner and more efficient technology for converting waste to electricity, but the process needs a more uniform waste size to operate, making it more complicated and expensive compared to moving grate systems. ‘Gasification’ plants use plastic and organic solid waste in a chemical conversion process that creates and burns sythesis gas at high temperatures.
Project planners should gauge how much WTE capacity is needed and then plan a pipeline of projects to support this capacity. This support should include waste collection logistics and quality in the way that waste is collected and processed. Economic feasibility should be based on affordable gate fees and electricity fed-in tariffs if applicable.
At every stage, the project should be marketed and explained to the general public, including a full description of the challenges and benefits of WTE technology. Finally, planners should incur full buy-in by the local municipal and national governments to help ensure the long-term support and viability of the project.
Municipal governments can leverage skill sets from the private sector in implementing WTE projects with state-of-the-art technology. Financing is available, along with long-term, predictable-quality waste contracts that help ensure reasonable tipping fees. Power-offtake contracts can include tariff levels that support the commercial viability of WTE projects. Singapore and other countries in the region are setting the right benchmark in this regard. Successful projects can serve as a template for other countries in the region.
Waste can represent an important 24/7 base power, especially if used in a small or medium sized plant. To find the optimal solutions Universal Kraft works with different technical partners, all from patented pyrolysis EPGS, with compact, scalable, efficient and flexible solutions, converting a variety of different wastes into energy. Our main interest is to bring waste into a circular context in smaller communities, in combination with sustainable actions. As solid waste and organic compounds in industrial wastewater and residue water are some of the feedstock that offer untapped energy potential.
When it comes to remote communities, like islands, we work with Island Power Solutions, the Group’s company focused on energy transition projects for islands.