Future of waste to energy tech


Published on

Published in: Technology, Business
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

Future of waste to energy tech

  1. 1. The Future of Waste to Energy TechnologySustainable waste to energy by focussing on the 3Ps EAI Presentation at Waste Management National Seminar, Mumbai - Oct 21, 2011 Narasimhan Santhanam Energy Alternatives India – EAI www.eai.in
  2. 2. About EAI Aspires to be a catalyst for the Indian renewable energy and cleantech industry • Dedicated focus on renewable energy and cleantech for India • Diversification, feasibility studies, market entry strategy, business intelligence • Founded by professionals from IITs and IIMs • Based out of Chennai • More from www.eai.in – see also our club, forum, mailing list…www.eai.in
  3. 3. The Future of W2E Technology • What are the problems with waste-to-energy? • Why these problems? • How can these problems be solved? • How can technology be part of the solution? • What technologies are emerging? • How could these technologies provide a sustainable W2E solution? • How do we see the future?www.eai.in
  4. 4. Problems with Current W2E Solutions Planet - Not environmentally benign People - Does not benefit all societal stakeholders Profit - Still very costlywww.eai.in
  5. 5. Why these problems? Misalignment with nature - Nature can convert waste to more value at less cost Centralized paradigm – Waste generation is distributed, why energy generation centralized? Thinking of waste as waste – My waste is someone else’s value!www.eai.in
  6. 6. How can these problems be solved? Segregate at the gate (! – Make it easy to change habits) Cradle to cradle mentality (!-Destroy less, recover more) Recognition that waste is just value in a different form (! – Emphasise recycling, identify markets for co-products) It’s the society, stupid (!- Involve stakeholders at every possible stage – government, rag pickers, local communities, farmers…) Get local (! - Devise methods for distributed energy recovery at high efficiencies to recover energy close to generation) Not just tech, but bio+tech (! - Identify recovery methods that combine the strengths of biotech and engineering)www.eai.in
  7. 7. Technology is…only part of the solution Market • Waste is value • Cradle to cradle Society • Segregate at the gate • It’s the society, stupid! (involve stakeholders) Technology • Get local (DEG) • It’s bio+techwww.eai.in
  8. 8. Technologies/Processes for W2E Today Technology/Pro Category Prevalence cess Anaerobic Digestion Biochemical Prevalent Pyrolysis Thermochemical Emerging Gasification Thermochemical Emerging Incineration Thermal Prevalentwww.eai.in
  9. 9. W2E Technologies - Pros and Cons Technology Advantages Bottlenecks Digestion •Can work on small scales •High capital and operating costs •Monetizes the entire waste •Long periods for biogas recovery •O&M problems in large-scale •Can work only for starchy, organic waste Pyrolysis •High monetization owing to •Technology still not fully production of charcoal or bio-oil established in terms of economics •Ideal for treating waste plastics Gasification •Efficient method for W2E •High capital costs •Can handle mixed wastes easily •Not fully established for MSW to •Diversity of products / power energy production mechanisms Incineration •Simple to operate •Poor overall monetization of •Relatively lower capital and waste operating costs •Pollution problemswww.eai.in •Well known technology
  10. 10. Technology Fit with Suggested Solutions AD Pyrolysis Gasification Incineration Waste is Yes Yes Yes No value Cradle to Yes Almost Somewhat No cradle Segregate at Yes Yes Yes/No No the gate It’s the Yes Yes Yes No society, stupid Get local Yes Yes No No It’s bio+tech Yes Yes Yes Nowww.eai.in
  11. 11. Technologies/Processes for W2E in Future Technology/Process Prevalence Anaerobic Digestion Prevalent for small and medium scale Gasification Prevalent for medium and large scale Pyrolysis Prevalent for selected feedstock Incineration Much less prevalentwww.eai.in
  12. 12. How do we see the future of W2E tech? • Use of recycling and composting synergised with energy recovery • Incineration being phased out • Anaerobic digestion becoming cheaper and overcoming operational deficiencies • Gasification going towards smaller scales (this is more a hope!) • Pyrolysis gaining increasing acceptance • Combinations of routes – AD and pyrolysis for instance (AD for biodigestible organics and pyrolysis for plastics etc.) • Ultimately, trying to address all 3Pswww.eai.in
  13. 13. Waste is just value that we are too stupid not to use – Albert Einsteinwww.eai.in
  14. 14. Thank you Narasimhan Santhanam EAI, narsi@eai.in, www.eai.in Mob: +91-98413-48117www.eai.in