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January, 2012:

Grundon outlines revised plans for Perth waste-to-energy plant

The firm behind plans to build a waste-to-energy plant on Perth’s Shore Road has outlined its intentions to the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) and Perth and Kinross Council.

grundon van flickr

Grundon Waste Management has returned to the table with Advanced Plasma Power Ltd (APP) with plans for a gasification plant — a scheme that has attracted thousands of objections.

Grundon claims its new plan addresses the reasons for its previous failure and new technology to turn waste into sustainable power and creates useable by-products.

Rather than incineration, ultraviolet light is used to convert waste to a fuel gas.

Martin Brooks, engineering director for APP, said, “The input to the plant would be a pre-treated, refuse-derived fuel produced off site, dried into a ‘floc’ material. This is gasified in a fluidised bed gasifier, producing solid chars and ash, as well as a syngas, which at this stage still contains tars and soot.

“We then use a plasma arc converter — used in other industries, for example to separate platinum from old catalytic converters as well as in steel production — to crack the impurities in the syngas and clean it up.

“At the same time the ash and the inorganic elements are vitrified —turned into a glass-like product known as Plasmarok. This is used, for instance, as a secondary aggregate to replace the extraction of primary materials being quarried for construction jobs.

“Finally, the clean gas powers gas engines which generate secure, clean heat and power.”

Grundon’s Bob Nicholson said the change in technology (from the originally intended incinerator) means instead of one large building, the process would be accommodated in a series of smaller buildings with a 34-metre chimney.

He said, “The new scale, design, appearance and layout mean the proposed development would be a similar size to other buildings in the local area.”

He added, “We have also redesigned the layout so the significant noise generating plant would be in a fully enclosed building at the north of the site, furthest away from the prison.”

Despite assurances the scheme has been branded by protesters as too dangerous for a town centre site and has attracted thousands of objections.

Photo by Flickr user eastleighbusman.

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Technology Paper


$30 Million Gasification Equipment Contract in Mexico

28 July 2011
Scorpex $30 Million Gasification Equipment Contract in Mexico
Emerging Mexican industrial, hazardous and toxic waste disposal services company, Scorpex, has agreed an equipment purchase contract with Kentucky, U.S. based International Environmental Technologies, Inc. (IET).

The contract covers the acquisition and installation of waste gasification/thermal oxidation equipment as well as a license to use the technology at Scorpex’s site in in the Baja California, Mexico.

Scorpex says that it has agreed to a total purchase price of $30 million. As terms of the agreement.

Under the agreement, $9 million will be paid upon the release of funds from Scorpex’s lender, $9 million will be paid upon IET’s delivery of a certification that the shop drawings and other engineering work for the installation has been completed, $9 million upon IET’s once erection of the steel framework for the two units has been completed and the final $3 million upon the final check out, testing and commissioning.

IET will install the equipment, train supervisory personnel to operate and maintain the equipment, provide a set of spare parts and issue certificates of completion. According to Scorpex, IET has also agreed to provide a warranty for the equipment installed. If malfunction is reported within the warranty period, IET will repair or replace the defective or non-conforming part.

Scorpex says that the IET system that it has selected features a low capital investment, as well as low operating costs and an average construction time of six to twelve months.

Scorpex’s CEO comments, “Signing such a major equipment contract at the dawn of establishing our first waste disposal and processing plant is yet another strong vote of confidence by others who have chosen to join our initiative to address Mexico’s growing demand for industrial, hazardous and toxic waste management.”

green groups re plasma arc

US Green Groups speak out:

Incinerator        NO

Plasma gasification  YES PLEASE

Download PDF : Conservation_Alliance

Download PDF : audubon_DEP_LLC_PlasmaGasificationProject

Hong Kong MSW – mass burn moving grate planned

CTA says: On Backchat 4th Jan 2012 Mr Elvis Au of EPD stated the largest plasma gasification plant was only processing 220 tonnes of waste per day and that he had been in touch with Plasma arc plant suppliers. Since we have contacted all of them we find this statement ‘strange’, to be kind to Mr Au.

Mr Au was not seemingly unaware that a 350,000 tonne per year MSW plant had received planning permission to proceed building on Tees side UK.

One of the plasma arc waste to energy company replies is shown below: seems quite clear to us. Perhaps our EPD sees the reply differently ?

Plasma arc vaporizes waste into its molecular state and the gases are collected and cleaned to make Syngas that is burned to generate electricity. Instead of paying to burn waste in an incinerator the gasified waste produces electricity for the grid. The residues of gasification are plasmarok which can be ground and used as aggregate.

Win-Win. Also since the plants are modular they can be discreetly sited closer to the waste streams in different areas of Hong Kong rather than one mega plant on a remote man-made island.

From: James Middleton []
Sent: Thursday, January 05, 2012 07:16
Subject: : Hong Kong MSW – mass burn moving grate planned –

Plasma Gasification plants are modular

How big do you want ?

—–Original Message—–
From: Brian Miloski []
Sent: Thursday, January 05, 2012 00:29
To: James Middleton
Subject: RE: Hong Kong MSW – mass burn moving grate planned –

James –

There is no theoretical limit.  The gasification chambers are simple modular and you add on as many as you need.  For example, our reference design uses four reactors running at 80% capacity processing approximately 2000 TPD.  To process 3000 TPD, we’d simply add two more reactors….and so on and so on.  Limitations on sizes of any gasification technology is generally feedstock based, not technology based.


CFO, Solena

T: +1 (917) 575-4816<><>

This message, including its contents and any attachments, are highly CONFIDENTIAL and for its intended recipients only.  If this message was received in error, please delete it immediately.


From: James Middleton []

Sent: Wednesday, January 04, 2012 12:48 AM

To: Brian Miloski

Subject: Hong Kong MSW – mass burn moving grate planned – Message was found to be spam: (100%) IP is in RBL,

Dear Chairman / CEO

I am the Chairman of<> a leading NGO in Hong Kong.

The local Hong Kong Government intends to build an MSW  mass burn incinerator (the first of two to be built) in Hong Kong. We are objecting to this old technology. Hong Kong currently dumps 3000 tonnes MSW, 3000 tonnes food waste and 3000 tonnes construction waste in landfill per day.

The HK  Government EPD says (onair today)<>

that they have checked plasma arc technology and the current plasma arc plants only can handle 220 tonnes per day. Obviously Airproducts’ Teesside UK plant will handle 900+ tonnes per day from their press release.

We understand the plasma technology and background  and are supporting it.

My question is simple – what is the largest possible MSW gasification plant you could build ?

Could a plant be built using plasma arc chambers that could handle 3,000 tonnes MSW per day ? 6,000 tonnes per day ? more ?

Kind regards,

James Middleton<><>

DOWNLOAD PDF : EIA 201 2011 – Comments from Solena Fuels (Dec 15 2011)-1

Why tariff rise was questioned

Arrogant reply from ENB – an excessively generous binding contract was signed by HK Govt with CLP which lies at the root of this problem.

South China Morning Post

Why tariff rise was questioned

I write in response to the letters from Y. K. Leung (“Tariff rises would power greener city”, December 31) and Thomas Gebauer (“Puzzled by environment chief’s stand”, January 1) on the electricity tariff.

Electricity is a basic necessity to Hong Kong people. A safe and reliable supply of electricity at a reasonable price is vital to our economy.

As power generation is the single largest source of air pollution in Hong Kong, we have taken pains in recent years to tackle it, resulting in a 71 per cent reduction in sulphur dioxide emissions in 2010 compared to 2007. That explains the multiple goals of the government’s energy policy, which centre on safety, reliability, affordability and the minimisation of the environmental impact.

Hong Kong is in the process of shifting to the use of cleaner fuel, including natural gas, for power generation. This means the fuel cost element of electricity tariffs will inevitably increase. However, the electricity tariff review this year differs from previous years in that we could not come to terms with the power companies on the extent of the tariff rise.

In the case of CLP Power (SEHK: 0002), our querying of its double-digit percentage rise in operating costs and premature capital investment, and emphasis on the need to moderate a tariff rise through deployment of the tariff stabilisation fund, were echoed by the community and resulted in CLP’s response: it lowered the increase to 4.9 per cent.

As we work towards cleaner air by improving emission control and increasing the use of cleaner fuel, there is a continued role for the government to exercise due diligence on the power companies’ expenditure and the resulting tariff adjustment. And that is what we have been doing in the past as well as assessing the 2012 adjustment. This is also what the community expects us to do, isn’t it?

Vyora Yau, principal assistant secretary for the environment (financial monitoring), Environment Bureau

Waste Gasification Headed for Antarctica

CES Lockheed Martin Waste Gasification Headed for Antarctica

A view to the north from McMurdo Station, Ross Island, Antarctica. McMurdo Station is one of three year-round research stations that are supported by the U.S. Antarctic Program.   Credit: Jeff Scanniello

04 January 2012

Larkspur, Colorado based waste to energy firm, Creative Energy Systems (CES), has been awarded a subcontract by Lockheed Martin to supply its technology to the United States Antarctic Program, according to a report in Mason City’s Globe Gazette.

According to Lockheed Martin it has been selected by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to operate and maintain the support infrastructure for the United States Antarctic Program (USAP) in a contract worth up to $2 billion.

Under the new contract, Lockheed Matin said that it will work with the NSF to implement a cost-effective, streamlined infrastructure for managing work stations and medical facilities, research vessels, construction projects and remote sites in and around Antarctica.

The corporation will also modernise technologies to transport scientists, staff and supplies to and from the Antarctic region.

The Globe Gazette’s report claimed that under its subcontract with Bethesda, Maryland based defence and technology systems giant, CES will deploy the same technology in Antarctica that it is planning to utilise its proposed waste to energy facility in Mason City, Iowa as well as its molecular separation technology.

According to the report the proposed $35 million gasification facility that would divert waste from landfill in north Iowa has sparked controversy, while the Mason City Zoning Board of Adjustment has granted CES a permit to operate so long as it meets 30 conditions.

The project must also be approved by the Landfill of North Iowa Board, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Alliant Energy and the Mason City Council, said the report.

The NSF said that over 3000 Americans participate each year in the program’s research and logistical activities, involving scientists as well as support personnel from the private sector and other Federal agencies that include the Department of Defense, NASA, the U.S. Geological Survey and the Department of Energy.

Lockheed Martin will provide logistical support for research at McMurdo Station, Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station, and Palmer Station, as well as for field research on the continent and oceanographic research in the Southern Ocean.

The foundation added that the overarching USAP goal is to advance the scientific forefront when research conducted in Antarctica offers a special way forward.

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Coffee Waste Gasification Brewing Up Energy in U.S.
The University of North Dakota’s Energy & Environmental Research Center is leading a project to efficiently generate electricity from the gasification of coffee processing wastes.

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Video: 50 Gallon Waste Gasifier Tested by U.S. Marines
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World Changing Ideas: 20 Ways to Build a Cleaner, Healthier, Smarter World

From solar power to powering our planet with garbage, Scientific American explores ideas that would improve our planet

By Christopher MimsAmanda SchupakMichael MoyerSarah SimpsonJohn PavlusGregory Mone,Melinda Wenner and Katherine Harmon | November 23, 2009

The Power of Garbage
Trapped lightning could help zap trash and generate electricity
By John Pavlus

Trash is loaded with the energy trapped in its chemical bonds. Plasma gasification, a technology that has been in development for decades, could finally be ready to extract it.

In theory, the process is simple. Torches pass an electric current through a gas (often ordinary air) in a chamber to create a superheated plasma—an ionized gas with a temperature upward of 7,000 degrees Celsius, hotter than the surface of the sun. When this occurs naturally we call it lightning, and plasma gasification is literally lightning in a bottle: the plasma’s tremendous heat dissociates the molecular bonds of any garbage placed inside the chamber, converting organic compounds into syngas (a combination of carbon monoxide and hydrogen) and trapping everything else in an inert vitreous solid called slag. The syngas can be used as fuel in a turbine to generate electricity. It can also be used to create ethanol, methanol and biodiesel. The slag can be processed into materials suitable for use in construction.

In practice, the gasification idea has been unable to compete economically with traditional municipal waste processing. But the maturing technology has been coming down in cost, while energy prices have been on the rise. Now “the curves are finally crossing—it’s becoming cheaper to take the trash to a plasma plant than it is to dump it in a landfill,” says Louis Circeo, director of Plasma Research at the Georgia Tech Research Institute. Earlier this summer garbage-disposal giant Waste Management partnered with InEnTec, an Oregon-based start-up, to begin commercializing the latter’s plasma-gasification processes. And major pilot plants capable of processing 1,000 daily tons of trash or more are under development in Florida, Louisiana and California.

Plasma isn’t perfect. The toxic heavy metals sequestered in slag pass the Environmental Protection Agency’s leachability standards (and have been used in construction for years in Japan and France) but still give pause to communities considering building the plants. And although syngas-generated electricity has an undeniably smaller carbon footprint than coal—“For every ton of trash you process with plasma, you reduce the amount of CO2 going into the atmosphere by about two tons,” Circeo says—it is still a net contributor of greenhouse gases.

“It is too good to be true,” Circeo admits, “but the EPA has estimated that if all the municipal solid waste in the U.S. were processed with plasma to make electricity, we could produce between 5 and 8 percent of our total electrical needs—equivalent to about 25 nuclear power plants or all of our current hydropower output.” With the U.S. expected to generate a million tons of garbage every day by 2020, using plasma to reclaim some of that energy could be too important to pass up.

Rapid growth of CFB WTE technology in China

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