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July, 2013:

Waste2Tricity announce first UK project | 2012 | scrap-ex

Waste2Tricity announce first UK project

by Paul Sanderson

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A 10.2MW gasification facility has been announced as Waste2Tricity’s first UK project.

The company plans to situate the plant at Bilsthorpe Industrial Park, Nottinghamshire, which is the site of the old Bilsthorpe Colliery.

It will be working with the owner of the land Peel Environmental, along with engineering associates AMEC and Foster Wheeler.

In a statement, Waste2Tricity said: “Our research has shown an abundance of available waste feedstock sources in the local region, meaning the fuel for this power station will be locally derived and negate the need to transport material over long distances. This is beneficial from both a cost and carbon emissions reduction point of view.

“The Bilsthorpe project is based on the Waste2Tricity technology template. This involves using waste derived feedstock to generate synthesis gas (syngas) through plasma gasification.

“This syngas will then be passed through various clean-up processes before exporting 10.2MW of electricity to the national grid from internal combustion engines. This template is an alternative to more traditional energy from waste ventures such as incineration.

“Also, in line with the Waste2Tricity technology template, the Bilsthorpe project is being developed to be fuel cell ready, with plans in place to pilot around 1MW of AFC Energy’s Alkaline Fuel Cells on the site once they have reached commerciality.

“This process will involve the production of hydrogen from syngas, which will then be used to generate highly efficient (above 55 per cent) low carbon electricity. The fuel cell model will be deployed in the future by Waste2Tricity, replacing the internal combustion engines in further projects. This will be a game-changing power station template in the energy from waste sector.”

7th Heaven Properties Appointed to Source Site for $300 Million Caribbean Clean Energy Plant

Published On: Fri, Jul 12th, 2013

Region | By Edition

7th Heaven Properties Appointed to Source Site for $300 Million Caribbean Clean Energy Plant

Caribbean real estate specialists 7th Heaven Properties exclusively appointed by Cahill Energy to source sites across the Caribbean and Central America to build a $300 million (USD) plant to transform household waste into clean, renewable energy

LONDON – London-based 7th Heaven Properties, specialists in residential and commercial Caribbean real estate, has been exclusively appointed by Cahill Energy to source and evaluate sites across the Caribbean Basin region to build a $300 million (USD) Waste to Energy plant utilising the most innovative technology available to transform all kinds of waste into clean, renewable energy.

Cahill Energy, which was established to finance, build, own and operate utility-scale Waste to Energy plants in key markets, has appointed 7th Heaven Properties to initiate a search across the Caribbean islands and Central America for the ideal site which would provide a leading edge, environmentally sound solution to two of the region’s most pressing challenges: waste management and energy security.

Landfill is currently the most commonly used waste disposal method in the Caribbean and Central America, but with waste generation rates rapidly rising as a result of population growth, urbanization and economic development, many landfill sites across the region are reaching capacity. With the Caribbean Basin region producing approximately 60 million tonnes of solid waste each year, Governments recognise that more efficient, sustainable and environmentally-friendly waste management and disposal solutions are required as a matter of urgency.

Most Caribbean and Central American countries and territories also face an energy security challenge. Largely reliant on imported sources of fossil fuels to meet soaring demand for energy, they are vulnerable to fluctuating energy prices and struggling to meet renewable energy targets.

Cahill Energy’s Waste to Energy technology represents a solution to both these challenges. Across Europe, where Waste to Energy goes hand in hand with waste minimisation and recycling initiatives, waste is commonly diverted away from landfill sites to about 400 plants in countries such as Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands. A continuous stream of new sites is coming on line in Europe, as well as China, Japan and India. Sweden has even begun importing garbage from neighbouring European countries which is transformed into clean, renewable energy to power homes.

Cahill Energy plans to invest $300 million (USD) of its own funds in the development of a Waste to Energy plant utilising proven, patented Waste to Energy technology already in use in 4 commercial facilities worldwide; with additional plants under construction in the UK and China. Using plasma gasification technology (the most effective and environmentally friendly method of waste treatment available) the plant would transform almost all kinds of solid waste into clean, renewable energy, providing a new domestic energy source for the selected location and reducing reliance on imported fuel. Unlike landfill, incineration and other less efficient Waste to Energy technology in use elsewhere, plasma gasification produces almost zero emissions.

Walter Zephirin, Managing Director of 7th Heaven Properties, commented: “We are delighted to have been appointed by Cahill Energy and to be working with Cahill on realising a clean, green solution to the Caribbean’s waste management and energy security challenges – issues of critical importance to sustainable development and economic growth in the Caribbean.”

Clare Cowan CEO of Cahill Energy added: “I am delighted to be working closely with 7th Heaven Properties, our exclusive representative, to develop opportunities for us to invest in the Caribbean region. We consider that the Caribbean has considerable potential as it has both major challenges in reducing waste going to landfill and a recognised need for renewable energy.”

Towards a zero waste society: An interview with Rolf Stein

Towards a zero waste society: An interview with Rolf Stein

Advanced Plasma Power chief executive Rolf Stein shares with Eco-Business how the British firm is focused on bringing innovative waste-to-energy technologies into the mainstream to maximise the value of waste while reducing its impact on the environment

Advanced Plasma Power’s chief executive officer Rolf Stein. Image: APP

Rolf Stein is, in his own words, a dad and concerned citizen. He left a cushy job at Hewlett Packard and Apple to join the growing waste to energy and renewable power generation industries to help the environment.

He says he is applying his experience in information technology to technology for sustainability. So since working in the plasma industry in 2006, he rose from commercial director of Tetronics International and Advanced Plasma Power (APP) to chief operating officer, and now to chief executive officer of APP.

In his position, he is intent on furthering the mission of the UK-based firm, which is to maximise the value waste provides while minimising the impact of waste on the environment.

APP, he explains, can address the world’s problems of increasing volumes of waste, increasing landfill levels and decreasing fossil fuel resources. The company has developed a zero-waste and highly efficient waste to energy process that converts discarded material into a clean, hydrogen-rich synthesis gas or syngas. Called ‘Gasplasma’ technology, it is a patented process that does not require combustion or incineration like most waste management solutions that only add to greenhouse gas emissions. With APP’s Gasplasma technology, even leftover ash is processed into a useable product for construction.

APP is also pioneering the development of cost-effective hydrogen from syngas, which can revolutionise several industries, he says, as this helps mitigate the fluctuation of gas pricing and supply.

In this interview, Stein tells Eco-Business why he considers APP a game changer and why the waste to energy sector in Asia has a lot to offer.  

Advanced Plasma Power started only in 2005, so it’s a fairly new company. How did the business begin?

Tetronics, the sister company to Advanced Plasma Power, developed the Gasplasma process for the recovery of heat and power from municipal and commercial waste. Following this, InvestSelect spun off (seeded) Advanced Plasma Power Limited (APP) in 2005 as the exclusive licensee of Tetronics’ Gasplasma technology, in order to develop renewable power generation projects. APP now owns the Gasplasma technology and associated intellectual property.

To give you some background, Tetronics is a specialist British engineering company recognised as a world leader in high temperature plasma technology. The company has a successful track record, and has deployed its patented plasma technology – a key component in APP’s Gasplasma process – in over 80 installations around the world. Tetronics’ plasma technology has been used at very large scale in a range of applications, including hazardous waste treatment and metal recovery.

What is plasma technology exactly? And how does the waste to energy process work?

Gasplasma is a unique combination of two proven technologies: gasification and plasma conversion. The gasifier transforms the organic material in the Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF) into a crude syngas containing tars and chars. It does this by heating the RDF to a high temperature, around 800°C, in a highly controlled reduced oxygen environment. The fluidised bed gasifier allows for the production of a consistent syngas and achieves high conversion efficiencies.

The crude syngas is then passed into the separate plasma conversion unit. Here, intense heat from the plasma arc is required to crack the chars and tars. However, Gasplasma is one of, if not, the most efficient processes on the market. The cracking then creates a clean syngas.

Right now, as populations and waste levels rise, and competition for fossil fuels increase, we are left facing a double-edged problem: rising landfill levels and limited fossil fuel reserves are placing a combined strain on the environment, infrastructure and budgets.

But our next-generation two-stage thermal process is the answer to this problem. Like what I explained earlier, it converts residual commercial and municipal waste into a clean and consistent quality synthesis gas, which can then be used to fuel gas engine power plants or converted to create substitute natural gas or other fuels, such as hydrogen. The process generates no-waste outputs as any ash is vitrified into an environmentally stable and saleable construction product, which we call Plasmarok.

APP’s Gasplasma process is a game changer for managing waste in the built environment as it produces no waste outputs and has low emissions. The plants can sit unobtrusively on the edge of towns using the waste to sustainably provide heat, power and fuels in exchange. It is a scaleable and sustainable means for waste management and power and fuel generation.

If this process can hit two birds with one stone, how come this solution hasn’t achieved mainstream status?

APP has a number of projects in the pipeline that are due to come to fruition imminently. However, as with any pioneering technology, there are challenges for APP associated with pioneering advanced conversion technologies and building a first-of-a-kind commercial facility. APP will have to pave a first route to market for this technology.

APP’s Gasplasma process is a game changer for managing waste in the built environment as it produces no waste outputs and has low emissions. The plants can sit unobtrusively on the edge of towns using the waste to sustainably provide heat, power and fuels in exchange.

For example, new technologies are more expensive to deploy to begin with until economies of scale can bring down costs including the costs of finance.

Presently, it is a challenging environment in which to raise money so APP has a very rigid contracting and project finance structure and with our advanced technology, investors can be assured of an attractive proposition given the right long term contracts are in place.

What makes APP different from other waste to energy providers?

We believe we have certainly one of, if not, the most efficient processes for the conversion of this residual material into electricity and this is all down to engineering, ensuring maximum heat recovery and obtaining as much value from waste as possible. This value is not only electricity. We can also offer other, more flexible, solutions downstream and we are in particular focusing on the production of green gas and hydrogen.

We obtain as much value from the residual material as possible as a fuel and materials resource. We remove recyclates, particularly metals, glass and dense plastics, and from the balance extract as much value as possible as a source of energy.

In terms of the plant itself, it is compact with a small footprint and has a low environmental and visual impact so the technology can be located close to waste arisings or the towns and cities where the waste is generated, reducing transport miles and costs. We have process heat that can be exported to make combined heat and power a reality, rather than having to site these plants in the middle of nowhere. That’s a key design factor.

What is the potential for this technology in the Asian market?

APP believes that the waste to energy sector is vastly under-developed in Asia but has some of the greatest potential. Waste management is a growing problem, for example in Singapore, waste is expected to double every decade. This abundant resource could be sustainably used to generate clean and renewable heat, power and fuels if the right technology is installed. This would reduce the impact on the environment and pressure on resources whilst simultaneously providing energy security.

In addition to its UK projects, APP is also making progress on plans to license its technology to international developers in other markets. It aims to provide engineering design in addition to key components and we are very close to securing a number of international orders in Asia. This is a key focus area for APP.

You used to work for HP and Apple. What made you switch from the IT industry to the waste to energy business?

Having worked for the world’s leading information technology companies, I am now applying my experience to technologies that can benefit the environment and reduce our impact on the planet. As a concerned citizen, for example, I drive an electric car. I wanted to make the move into the renewable energy sector and APP and its team of engineers with a leading technology was the obvious choice. I embrace technological innovation and as we move to commercial deployment, I hope that many communities will benefit from this local sustainable solution to waste management and power generation.

Gasification CO2 emissions are carbon neutral

Biomass is a form of stored solar energy – containing both water and carbon dioxide absorbed from the atmosphere and converted through photosynthesis.  When the energy stored in biomass is converted to heat or fuels through gasification, the carbon dioxide is released back into the atmosphere.  An amazing advantage of this process is that its net carbon balance is almost zero!

Biomass fuels minimize green house gas emissions, whereas natural gas emits 10 times the carbon dioxide that biomass does and coal produces twice as much as natural gas!

Biomass provides a unique recycling opportunity for many waste streams.  The following materials can be converted into energy:

  • Wood and paper industry by-products
  • Agricultural residues after harvest (e.g., corn stover)
  • Manure
  • MSW


CO2 as a Carbon Neutral Fuel Source via Enhanced Biomass Gasification

Heidi C. Butterman and Marco J. Castaldi *

Department of Earth and Environmental Engineering (HKSM) Columbia University, 500 West 120th Street, 927 S.W. Mudd, New York, N.Y. 10027

From: Tech

Sent: 13 February, 2013 01:54

To: ‘James Middleton’

Subject: RE: CTAlettPanelEAFeb2013

Just for your information, the McCusker article is a nice overview, but one mistake he makes is comparing the volume of CO2 produced by incineration processes with gasification processes. The mistake is that he treats the CO2 produced from each as equal, which is not the case.  CO2 emissions from coal are new volumes to be added to the atmosphere, whereas those from the gasification plant are recycled CO2 emissions. For this reason, CO2 from a gasification plant are considered to be carbon neutral.  Regarding our work with British Airways in the UK, it should be noted that BA is so pleased with our work that it has asked Solena to build three more biofuels plants—two in Spain and one more in the UK.

Best regards,


Garbage in – Power out

Hinkley nuclear power station community ‘could receive £128m’

Wow – I wonder what HK Govt is intending for Tuen Mun and Tseung Kwan O??

Guardian Environment Network

Hinkley nuclear power station community ‘could receive £128m’

Government announces package of financial benefits for eight sites earmarked for new nuclear plants

Hinkley Point Nuclear Power Plant Expansion Plans

Communities surrounding Hinkley point in Somerset could be in line for £128m under planned government benefits. Photograph: Matt Cardy/Getty Images

UK communities could be paid millions of pounds to host nuclear power plants, the government announced on Wednesday.

Eight sites in England and Wales could be in line to receive benefits of up to £1,000 per megawatt hour of electricity produced for up to 40 years after the reactors come online.

The funds will be tailored to the areas and focus on ensuring a local economic legacy from the projects, the government said. Overall payments to an area such as that surrounding Hinkley Point in Somerset, earmarked for two reactors, could reach £128m.

The move follows similar schemes for communities hosting shale gas rigs or onshore wind farms, which were unveiled earlier this year. Under the proposed community benefit schemes wind farms will generate benefits of £5,000/MWh over 20 years, while shale gas operators will have to pay £100,000 for each well site, as well as 1% of production revenues.

Business and Energy Minister Michael Fallon said: “It is absolutely essential that we recognise the contributions of those communities that host major new energy projects. This package is in the interests of local people, who will manage it to ensure long-term meaningful benefit to the community. It’s proportionate to the scale and lifespan of new nuclear power stations and it builds on the major economic benefits they will bring in terms of jobs, investment and use of local services.”

The package builds on a business rates retention scheme introduced in April this year that allows local government to keep half of the business rates it collects from nuclear projects for up to a decade. By contrast, local authorities can retain all of the business rates from land based renewables that have come online after 1 April this year.

The government said any new nuclear plants will provide a significant boost to council funding through this scheme for the first 10 years of operation, after which they will receive additional funding from central government. However, this funding will end in 2060, so if a plant came on line in 2025, after 10 years of receiving business rates, councils would only receive 25 years of central government payments.

The government regards nuclear as an essential component of the UK’s future low-carbon energy mix and has identified Hinkley Point, Sizewell, Wylfa, Oldbury, Sellafield, Bradwell, Heysham, and Hartlepool as appropriate potential sites for new nuclear plants.

But the government has been struggling to agree a guaranteed price for electricity with developer EDF, which the French company deems essential before it will build the first new reactors at Hinkley Point.

Campaigners have argued that using such agreements vastly inflate the cost of nuclear power, while adding to the nuclear fleet will only create further problems around the disposal of nuclear waste, which already takes up over half of the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) budget.

Pyrolysis’ potential for fuels of the future

Bramhall Pyrolysis currently shows the most potential for making fuels of the future, a leading expert from Axion Consulting suggested at this week’s Green Supply Chain conference in York. Roger Morton, Director of resource recovery specialists Axion, says this process for converting biomass to useable transport fuels offers significant advantages over the alternative gasification method.

At the laboratory

Foto: ©Rolf van Melis/PIXELIO

His address to delegates at the November event, organised by the National Non-Foods Crops Centre, examined the fundamental differences and benefits of both chemical processes, which use heat to create fuels for blending with existing fossil-derived variants. This year’s conference focused on integration between the biorenewable sectors being key to a renewable carbon economy.

“Pyrolysis offers much greater yields at lower economic and environmental cost than gasification. This is because it efficiently converts the large molecules in the biomass to molecule size in the final fuel. There’s no easy answer, but it offers the more long-term practical solution,” Roger said. And added: “Other processes, such as gasification, break down the biomass into smaller molecules (usually CO2 and H2) which are then combined to create the fuel product using processes such as Fischer Tropsch synthesis. Such processes are thermodynamically less efficient and, therefore, will provide a lower product yield.”

Axion is a partner in Scarab Distributed Energy Ltd, which is looking to develop 10 to 15 distributed biomass to liquid fuels operations across the UK over the next few years. It brings specialist project management expertise in the resource recovery sector to the partnership’s work in developing novel ways of producing fuel and power from waste, including industrial food waste

VTT: New gasification method – for biofuel less than 1 € per litre

Lascut, Finland — According to the new research results of the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, lignocellulosic biomass can be used in the production of high-quality biofuels for the price of less than one euro per litre. A new technology developed in Finland allows the transfer of more than half the energy of wood raw materials to the end-product. The technology is considered ready for the construction of a commercial-scale production plant in Europe.

Fuel pump

Foto: ©Günter Havlena/Pixelio

VTT has assessed the techno-economics of the production of renewable liquid transportation fuels from forest residues. The case studies focused on the production of four biofuels using a method based on pressurised fluidised-bed gasification. The fuels studied were methanol, dimethyl ether (DME), Fischer-Tropsch liquids and synthetic gasoline.

Production cost by 0.5 to 0.7 €/litre

The results show that the production of renewable biofuels from lignocellulosic biomass, mainly bark and forestry residues, could achieve an energy efficiency of 50 to 67 percent, depending on the end-product and process conditions. Should the thermal energy produced as a by-product be exploited for district heat or industrial steam, for example, the overall efficiency from biomass to saleable energy products could reach 74 to 80 percent.

Based on the case studies, the research scientists estimated that once commercialised the technology can be used to produce liquid transportation fuel at the cost of 58 to 78 €/MWh. Converted into gasoline-equivalent price per litre, the estimated production cost would be 0.5 to 0.7 €/litre. The price of renewable solutions would thus be on a level with the current pre-tax price of fossil transportation fuels, and cheaper than existing imported biofuels.

Fuel for about 150.000 cars

Each case study design was based on a BTL plant with 300 MW capacity, the equivalent of a large district heating power plant. A biorefinery of this size could produce liquid transportation fuel for about 150.000 cars. The EU has set a target of 10 percent renewable energy content for the transportation sector by 2020. For Finland, the target is 20 percent.

After long-term development work, the technical functionality of the production process was verified through extensive testing at VTT test rigs as well as industrial piloting in Finland and in the US. The technology is now ready for its first commercial-scale demonstration. However, the first wave of these ground-breaking production plants requires significant public venture capital investment, for which planning has consequently been initiated at both Finnish and EU level.

Biomethanol with lowest costs

According to the research results, the best efficiency and lowest production costs were achieved in the production of biomethanol. The risks related to the commercialisation of the synthesis technology were also estimated to be lower with the biomethanol production plant compared to the other options.

Methanol is an alcohol fuel that can be used in modern cars at maximum three volume-percent content in combination with petrol or, as with ethanol, in high concentrations in FlexFuel cars designed for this purpose. Methanol can also be further converted to synthetic gasoline or used as renewable raw material in the manufacture of various chemicals and biomaterials

Turning garbage into gas

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Opinion » Lead Published: July 18, 2013 02:10 IST | Updated: July 18, 2013 02:11 IST July 18, 2013

Turning garbage into gas Prem Shankar Jha

While incineration endangers lives, gasification will produce transport fuel that can meet half of India’s consumption needs

Delhi’s Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit has been at her wits’ end on how to dispose of the city’s ever growing mountain of garbage. Rising population and growing affluence have raised the daily outpouring of refuse to more than 8,000 tonnes, while simultaneously pushing up the cost of land to astronomical levels. The result: Delhi has run out of land for landfills, and none of the neighbouring States intends to surrender any to meet its needs.

The obvious answer to Delhi’s problem seems to be to burn the solid waste. Cities all over the world are doing it, so why can’t Delhi follow suit? In 2006, the Delhi Municipal Corporation proposed that a small, mothballed, waste incineration plant at Timarpur, that had been put to work for altogether five days since it was built in the 1980s, be reopened to convert 214,000 tonnes of solid waste a year into 69,000 tonnes by sifting out inorganic matter, and drying and palletising the rest to increase its fuel value. Burning this garbage, it was estimated, would produce six megawatts of power per hour, or 5.5 billion units of electricity a year.

The proposal never took off, but it became the springboard for a private sector grab at Delhi’s garbage — investors figured their income would come from the highly inflated tariff decreed by the Central government for ‘green’ energy and the carbon credits they would earn by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Their plans are close to maturing. In her 2013-14 budget speech, Ms Dikshit announced that the city already has one incineration plant at Okhla, burning almost 2,000 tonnes a day, and that two more are being set up to incinerate another 4,300 tonnes a day. What’s more, these plants will generate 50 MW of power every hour of the day. More incineration plants are on their way: since the Okhla plant went on stream, the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests has approved eight more plants in various cities.

There is, however, a catch. Incinerating garbage in Delhi will cost an estimated 200,000 ragpickers their jobs. Throughout the world, moreover, countries are closing incineration plants owing to the hazard they pose to human health. The threats come from particulate emissions that greatly exacerbate lung diseases from bronchitis and asthma to emphysema and lung cancer, and from dioxins and furans in addition to the usual nitrogen and sulphur oxide gases in the flue gas.

The dioxin threat

To residents of Indian cities who have become inured to dust, smoke, diesel fumes, as well as lead and nitrous oxide poisoning, this may sound like just one more addition to the long list of risks they face in their daily lives. But dioxins belong to another level of threat altogether. The word is a generic term for more than a hundred long lasting chemicals that are produced by burning municipal and medical waste and by a few industrial processes. Dioxins are insoluble in water and when they settle on land and water bodies, they are absorbed in their entirety by terrestrial and aquatic vegetation. They travel up the food chain into animals and fish that feed on plants and thence into humans. Since living organisms cannot metabolise them, they are found in very high concentrations in meat, fish, milk and eggs. In human beings, a prolonged exposure to dioxins — through a ‘rich diet’ — impairs the functioning of the liver and the immune and reproductive systems, and raises the incidence of cancer. In sum, dioxins shorten our lifespan. Men have no way of expelling them. Women can, but only by passing them to foetuses in their wombs or breast-feeding their babies.

Not surprisingly, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which put together the first comprehensive report on dioxins in 1994, described them as “the most poisonous substances known to man.” In Finland, the government has ordered shut an incineration plant built with the most elaborate safeguards when it found, after two years of its operation, that dioxin levels in the surrounding vegetation had risen by 15 to 25 per cent within a distance of 4 km from the plant.

Whenever environmentalists have pointed these hazards out to the Delhi government, its officials and company representatives have assured them that elaborate safeguards have been incorporated into the design of the plants to ensure that they meet prescribed safety norms. But subsequent tests have falsified this claim. In tests carried out at Okhla last year, particulate emissions exceeded norms on four occasions and stayed within them only on six. A test carried out in May 2013 revealed dioxins and furans emissions from its two chimney stacks to be 2.8 and 12.7 times the prescribed maximum!

In the face of such facts, the Delhi government has merely reaffirmed its determination to go ahead with setting up the incineration plants. This has led to the usual accusations of corruption and crony capitalism, but in this case the cause probably lies in two preconceptions that are deeply imbedded in the public mindset. First, that garbage is simply a nuisance and has no economic value whatever; second, since the physical sorting of household refuse is not feasible in India, incineration is the only way out.

Both assumptions reflect the casual ignorance of decision-makers. There is a third way of disposing garbage that not only eliminates all pollutants, but turns garbage into gold. This is to gasify garbage. Gasification is an incomplete combustion of organic matter that replaces a large part of the carbon dioxide we get from combustion with carbon monoxide and hydrogen. These two gases are, and have been for a hundred years, the basic building blocks of the world’s petrochemicals industry. They are also ideal for driving gas turbines to generate power. From India’s perspective, their best feature is the ease with which they can be synthesised into any transport fuel one desires, and into Di Methyl Ether, a condensate gas that is a superior diesel substitute and a complete substitute for Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG).

Gasification also eliminates the threat from dioxins. When gasification is carried out with oxygen, it produces only seven per cent of the flue gas obtained from combustion. The reaction takes place, moreover, at such high temperatures —1000 to 3,000 degrees Celsius — that dioxins and furans get broken down into their basic elements, losing their toxicity. The release of dioxins from a 24 tonne-per-day plasma gasification plant that has been running for more than a decade in Yoshii, Japan, has been found to be less than one per cent of that released by corresponding incineration plants. Consequently, city and municipal corporations around the world have begun to switch to gasification. According to the U.S.-based Recovered Energy Inc., a turnkey engineering company specialising in renewable energy projects, there are 200 Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) gasification plants under construction or in operation globally, of which half use the revolutionary new technology called plasma gasification.

Isolated ventures

Ironically, India already has employed plasma gasification technology — for the past four years, two 68 tonnes-a-day commercial plants employing this technology have been disposing of medical and other hazardous wastes in Pune and Nagpur. Since Indian states do not share information, however, these have remained isolated ventures.

At present, most MSW gasification plants abroad produce electricity. But this is giving way to the production of transport fuels. British Airways is partnering Solena, a U.S.-based biofuels company, to set up a plant that will gasify 1,300 tonnes a day of London’s solid waste to produce 16 million gallons of Aviation Turbine Fuel and 9 million gallons of naphtha in addition to generating up to 40 MW of power. This plant is expected to meet two per cent of British Airways’ global demand for jet fuel. Solena has won contracts for similar plants with Qantas, Lufthansa and SAS. Lufthansa’s plant will have a modification that New Delhi will do well to take note of: instead of naphtha, it intends to produce 9 million tonnes of diesel fuel.

India stands therefore at a crossroads. In 10 years from now, 600 million Indians will be living in cities with more than a million inhabitants who generate at least 600,000 tonnes of garbage a day. Incinerating this garbage will endanger the lives of future generations. Alternatively, this is sufficient to produce more than 35 million tonnes of transport fuel a year and meet half of India’s current consumption of the same. The saving in foreign exchange will lift the threat of a foreign exchange crisis forever. It will also free domestic prices from the yoke of international oil prices forever. And it will do all this without requiring a rupee of subsidies.

(The writer is a senior journalist)

Keywords: Delhi governmentSheila Dikshitsolid waste managementDelhi’s garbagemunicipal wastepower plant

Printable version | Jul 18, 2013 9:41:54 AM |

© The Hindu

Officials stick with outdated technologies

Published on South China Morning Post (

Home > Letters to the Editor, July 18, 2013

Letters to the Editor, July 18, 2013

Thursday, 18 July, 2013, 12:00am


Officials stick with outdated technologies

Howard Winn has been spot on with two pieces in Lai See (“Does the government need to rethink its incinerator project? [2]“, July 3, and “Buried treasure a waste when we can sell it to the Europeans [3]“, July 11) calling attention to modern ways to handle municipal solid waste. These include plasma gasification, waste-to-energy plants and the possibility of selling some of this waste to countries with excess capacity in waste to energy.

Given our government’s penchant for sticking to outdated and costly technologies, can we possibly believe that its current plans to erect costly and outdated giant incinerators – generating no energy – are the best way to go? I think not.

This municipal solid waste conundrum mirrors the government’s determination to build a monorail by the new Kai Tak cruise terminal.

Again, compared with modern light rail, this will cost a lot more to erect and run. The government should look at Sydney, where they are tearing down their own unsuccessful monorail, which has been a blight on the city centre.

Why can’t our government learn something from other parts of the world and give us modern, efficient, cost-effective infrastructure projects, instead of sticking to expensive and outdated technologies?

Peter Forsythe, Discovery Bay



How is the discussion progress ? 15 July 2013

Bryden mum about Plasco financing as countdown begins on city deal

By David Reevely Ottawa Citizen

Bryden mum about Plasco financing as countdown begins on city deal
Rod Bryden, President and CEO of Plasco Energy Group

OTTAWA — The high-tech impresario behind Plasco Energy Group won’t say whether he thinks the company can meet an Aug. 31 deadline set by the city for proving it has the financing to build a major garbage-disposal facility in Ottawa. But Rod Bryden does say he definitely won’t be meeting a deadline a month earlier the city wants to set so councillors can make an informed decision about killing the contract the City of Ottawa has with Bryden’s company.

“I don’t want to engage in providing information about financing prior to the time I provide it to the city,” Rod Bryden said Monday. The city announced Friday it sent the Plasco chief executive a letter giving the company 60 days to show it has the necessary financing in place. The company must also show it has signed at least $5 million worth of contracts for construction of the facility, a condition built into Plasco’s December 2011 deal with the city for disposal of up to 150,000 tonnes a year of residential garbage. The deadline in the contract is Aug. 31. But the letter from Kent Kirkpatrick says city council wants to make a decision on whether to end the contract at a meeting a few days earlier, Aug. 28. Its environment committee meets to give a recommendation on what to do Aug. 22. City rules say an agenda for that meeting has to be published Aug. 15.

“In order to ensure that the report is available for release on this date, Plasco must provide the necessary documentation to the City for verification on or before July 31, 2013,” the letter says.

No, Bryden said in an interview. He expects to give the city and councillors the information they demand by Aug. 21, before the environment committee meets. Beyond that, all Bryden would say about finding the money and letting contracts is “it’s going fine.”

Plasco proposes to use “plasma gasification” technology to dispose of waste, cracking garbage apart at the molecular level via extremely high temperatures and turning the trash into a burnable gas, with a small amount of inert glassy slag let over. The city would pay $83.25 per tonne of waste disposed; that’s double the operating costs at the city’s Trail Road landfill, but would put off an expense of hundreds of millions of dollars to open a new landfill when that facility is full.

That’s if Plasco’s process works, and if investors and lenders are willing to fund it. The contractual clause activated by the city’s letter is meant to kill the project if Plasco can’t get it off the ground. The company has already had the deadline extended once; Kirkpatrick’s letter says that if Plasco wants another one, it’ll have to give city officials a comprehensive presentation on why — also by the end of July.

The entrepreneur and former owner of the Ottawa Senators has said repeatedly in the past that Plasco was close to achieving important milestones which proved to take months. But other work is proceeding, he said. “We are fully into all the work you need to do to deliver this Ottawa project. There are studies underway as to air quality, there are studies, I think completed, as to the hydrology under the site,” he said. (The property to be used for the plant, close to the landfill, belongs to the city and as a landlord it wants assurances the plant can operating without fouling its surroundings.)

One major stumbling block in the past has been getting a deal with the provincial government to sell electricity the plant generates to the grid. Bryden said Plasco doesn’t have a signed deal with the Ontario Power Authority for that but does have a set of clear conditions to meet.

“The OPA typically doesn’t enter into a contract until the plant they are entering into a contract with is operational,” Bryden said.

A test facility, also near Trail Road, has been closed for months for upgrades after running trials meant to satisfy investors that Plasco’s waste-to-energy process really works. It is expected to resume operating by the end of July, Bryden said.

© Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen

From: CLP News []
Sent: 24 May, 2013 15:17
To: ‘James Middleton’
Subject: RE: Powwr Grid interconnection

Dear Mr Middleton,

Thank you for your email to Mr Lancaster. We appreciate your interest in the energy subject which is important issue to all people in Hong Kong.

CLP is supportive to development of renewable energy (RE) projects while we put the highest priority to safety and technical compliance in our operations. For customers who wish to install their own RE facilities, we provide technical support to help them fulfill specified technical and safety requirements set by Electrical and Mechanical Services Department. Currently most of these projects are in small scale, and their connection to power grid is to ensure stable backup power supply purpose.

We also assess and discuss commercial, technical and operational impact for larger scale RE facilities, like the Government’s waste-to-energy projects, to connect to our grid. Meanwhile, CLP is still in discussion with the Government on such connection, and detail is not available yet.

We appreciate views from stakeholders. Should you have any opinion on energy issues, you are most welcome to share with us.

Public Affairs Department
CLP Power

From: James Middleton []
Sent: Wednesday, May 08, 2013 4:42 PM
To: CLP News
Subject: FW: Powwr Grid interconnection

Attention Mr Richard Lancaster CLP

Dear Mr Lancaster,

Yesterday our ENB staged a public forum where they presented experts on incineration from various countries.

Each one had the same theme : the WtE systems generate electricity, in this case perhaps 50 Mw.

They seemed unaware that CLP and HK Electric have their own contractual agreements with Government regarding electricity supply here.

When we queried Elvis Au of ENB on how they sought permission to connect to the local grid his reply was ‘ we will tell them we will do it”.

Legally is there any way they can force this incinerator generated power onto you or your HK Island competitors ?

If not, what would your response be to such an interconnection into the power grid ?

Kind regards,

James Middleton


Specialty Gas Report – Maximizing the Potential of Gasification Facilities – Simple Solutions, Huge Benefits

Specialty Gas Report – Maximizing the Potential of Gasification Facilities – Simple Solutions, Huge Benefits

Courtesy of Verde LLC

Jul. 10, 2013

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Download Full Article (PDF)

Here and now gasification plants have the functionality to make the hydrogen economy a real possibility. Greatly reducing the cost of hydrogen production by using renewable resources and advanced, reliable processing techniques enables a gasification plant to produce valuable hydrogen product from waste materials. While the technology is available to enable this functionality, however, most plants opt to simply create SynGas (a mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide.) However, as market demand for hydrogen increases in parallel with the stationary and transportation fuel cell industry, gasification facilities will likely be the top producer of renewable hydrogen fuel – mostly due to the low cost of production and the scalability of plants. This paper will discuss minor changes to gasification plants that plant operators can implement which will maximize the value of their assets, and enable them to easily create a product with higher purity and productivity.

The recent Air Products news release about their plans to construct the UK’s largest waste-to-energy gasification facility is a shining example of the rising trend in larger gasification facilities that the greater renewable energy industry is seing today. Gasification facilities are a unique and economical way to transform the waste we produce as a modern civilization into our own, renewable energy. And the potential of these facilities is staggering. Sweden might be the best example of a country truly putting waste-to-energy technology to good use – not only have they built several biogas, biomass, and gasification facilities, they also have such efficient operations that they literally find it economical to import garbage for energy transformation. That’s right, the Swedes are buying other countries’ trash. Incredible.


As these facilities proliferate, though, it lends the question what will be done in the future as the facilities become bigger and more efficient? To answer that, take a step back and look at why these facilities are becoming more popular in the first place. First is the abundance of a fuel source (the garbage, landfill gas, crop chaff, wood chips, crop waste, food waste, etc, etc.) More important to the spread of this technology though, is the relative energy contained in the end product, SynGas. SynGas is appropriately used in boilers and can easily be converted to heat, hot water, cooling using evaporative equipment, and also electricity. What makes SynGas so useful is the hydrogen content of the blend. Hydrogen has a very high heating value by mass, nearly triple that of natural gas. Therefore, maximizing the efficiency of SynGas plants can be done by increasing the output of hydrogen with the same amount of feedstock. Sounds like magic, right? Well it isn¡¦t, and in fact this is easily done with low cost equipment.

Using a shift gas reactor, gasification facilities can increase the hydrogen content of their SynGas by reacting the prevalent carbon monoxide with steam. The heat catalyst starts a chemical reaction between the carbon monoxide in the SynGas and the heated water in the shift reactor as shown by the equation below:

H2O + CO → H2 + CO2
As you can see from the equation, there is a carbon dioxide byproduct from this reaction. Unlike in combustion facilities which must capture CO2 from super heated combustion exhaust, CO2 can more easily be taken out of the process¡¦s waste stream from the reactor with low cost carbon-capture storage (CCS) technology. Paired with CCS, a biomass gasification facility with a shifting reactor produces:

  • A higher energy content, pure hydrogen product
  • Zero carbon emissions (CO2 and CO)
  • Slight amount of heat (exothermic process)

While a shift gas reactor may cost only 10% of the total investment of a gasification facility, the increase in productivity from the final gas product can increase 25% or more, depending on the composition of the SynGas. The operating expense of a shift reactor is minimal as catalysts are available to achieve the process for a range of temperatures, high and low.

Standard hydrogen production equipment manufacturers can provide shift conversion equipment to SynGas facilities here and now. While hydrogen gas already demands a high price for its traditional uses in chemical, industrial, mechanical, and refining operations, the price will surely rise steadily as demand from new and existing fuel cell applications strains the supply from existing hydrogen production facilities. Creating hydrogen from SynGas is an economical way for gasification plants to maximize their assets¡¦ value, while also hedging for future developments.

By Sam Sterling and Nick Ni from Verde LLC, a Massachusetts company devoted to Renewable Hydrogen Technology.