Wastes as Energy Resource
The tremendous increase in the quantum and diversity of waste materials generated by human activities has focused the spotlight on waste management options. Waste generation rates are affected by standards of living, degree of industrialization, and population density. Generally, the greater the economic prosperity and the higher percentage of the urban population, the greater the amount of waste produced. A good example is the oil-rich GCC nations which are counted among the world's most prolific per capita waste generators.
There is, no doubt, an obvious need to reduce, reuse and recycle waste but recovery of energy from waste is also gaining ground as a vital method for managing waste.
Wastes can be transformed into clean and efficient energy and fuel by a variety of technologies, ranging from the conventional combustion process to state-of-the-art plasma gasification technology. Besides recovery of energy, such technologies lead to a substantial reduction in the overall waste quantities requiring final disposal.
Waste-to-energy projects provide major business opportunities, environmental benefits, and energy security.
Feedstock for waste-to-energy plants can be obtained from a wide array of sources including municipal wastes, crop residues, and agro-industrial wastes.