GreenYes Archives
[GreenYes Archives] - [Thread Index] - [Date Index]
[Date Prev] - [Date Next] - [Thread Prev] - [Thread Next]

[greenyes] Energy recovery and zero waste
Seems to me that technologies that effectively heat wastes for energy
recovery should hardly be viewed as zero waste solutions.  The embedded
investment made to produce finished fiber, metal, and plastics products
is much larger than the value of the energy produced by combusting the
material in whatever type of process you apply.  In addition, if you
burn the pulp, you do nothing to offset the demand for raw fiber, and
the associated environmental damages that production engenders.  With
metals mining, damages can be even higher.  Some repolymerization may be
efficient for plastics recovery; I'm not well enough versed in the
technologies to judge how much of the initial investment in resin
refining is lost in the process.

An analogy from the world of finance may be useful.  When modeling
corporate takeovers or restructurings, the floor value scenario is often
the firm's liquidation value: selling the desks, the buildings, the
computers to whomever will buy them.  For most companies, the value of
keeping the entire corporate enterprise operating (though with better
management), or of spinning off parts into newly separated but more
efficiently-sized firms, generate much greater wealth than simply
selling all the parts for scrap.  In recycling, energy recovery should
be viewed as the floor scenario as well: better than dumping the stuff
in a hole, but not by much.

-Doug Koplow

Doug Koplow
Earth Track, Inc.
2067 Massachusetts Avenue - 4th Floor
Cambridge, MA  02140
Tel:  617/661-4700
Fax: 617/354-0463

>>> Leslie Nowinski <lnowinski@no.address> 09/12/03 17:52 PM >>>
New technologies such as Plasma waste conversion, Gasification and 
Thermal Depolymerization that use MSW to create electricity or oil 
without creating pollution are something to consider.  A company like 
Startech is a good place to start...

On Wednesday, September 17, 2003, at 05:31 PM, Eric Lombardi wrote:

> Greetings GreenYessers,
> This proposed Broga incinerator has a $400 million price tag to handle

> 1,500 TPD.    What would the 1.500 TPD Zero Waste Plan look like, and 
> how much would it cost?  Until we can answer that question, we haven't

> lived up to our potential.   If anyone has the answer, there are some 
> folks in Malaysia that would like to talk to you...and so would I.   
> And let's be careful not to fall into that familiar old trap of 
> creating only end-of-pipe solutions ... that's not Zero Waste, that's 
> just Maximum Recovery.
> Eric Lombardi
> Eco-Cycle
> (Source: MalaysiaKini)
> "Malaysians not gullible customers of incineration salesmen "
>             Dr Spin
>                         6:35pm Mon Aug 25th, 2003
>                         Now that the release of the Broga 
> environmental impact assessment report has been delayed until October,

> there is an opportunity for those who have not researched the subject 
> of incinerator feasibility and safety to now do so.
>                         No one would expect every Malaysian resident 
> or voter to check the international experience regarding incinerators,

> but those who make decisions and present cases for and against the 
> project should surely do so.
>                         In one developed country after another, the 
> findings have been the same - incineration of municipal waste is 
> neither economically feasible nor safe.
>                         The claimed benefits and safeguards cannot be 
> proven while sensible analysis of issues such as toxic waste streams, 
> site suitability and community risk versus benefits suggests that 
> there are better and safer options. Waste reduction including zero 
> waste strategies and recycling are not only options but essential 
> measures for the future.
>                         In Australia, after years of attempting to 
> develop the SWERF incinerator technology (Solid Waste to Energy 
> Recycling Facility), the project was scrapped as being uneconomical as

> well as socially and environmentally unacceptable.
>                         The Broga site is particularly unsuitable for 
> an incinerator as it is in valley among beautiful hills, forest and 
> water catchment areas and close to a township which is a showpiece of 
> good environmental care by residents.
>                         No site is really suitable for an incinerator.

> However, the fact that the authorities did not select a truly remote 
> and well-ventilated site - but rather the Broga site which sits too 
> close to human development and where the massive quantities of water 
> vapour and waste emissions will not readily disperse - indicates a 
> grave lack of understanding.
>                         Malaysian do care for the well-being of 
> themselves and their children. They do not want to be seen a 
> third-world, ignorant and gullible customer of ruthless and 
> irresponsible big business.
>                         If Malaysians use the next two months to voice

> their concerns, the government may realise that it is not only the 
> future of residents that is at stake - but also that of the government

> and the reputation of Malaysia.

[GreenYes Archives] - [Date Index] - [Thread Index]
[Date Prev] - [Date Next] - [Thread Prev] - [Thread Next]