Energy from waste
Waste represents an increasingly important fuel source. Using waste as fuel can have important environmental benefits. It can not only provide a safe and cost-effective way of waste disposal but can also help reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
Whilst energy can be derived from waste by burning landfill gas, there are also alternative methods to generate energy from waste.
When waste is incinerated in large amounts, the heat energy can be recycled and used to heat factories, hospitals and other large buildings. Alternatively, the heat can be used to generate electricity. This is done by using the steam created by combustion to drive a steam turbine.
Electricity-generating waste plants can typically process between 20,000 and 600,000 tonnes of waste per year, from which they can generate between one and 40 MW of electricity.
Waste-derived fuel can also be burnt in boilers as an alternative to coal.
Any energy that is recovered from biological w