Waste-to-energy market soars as report reveals it could grow to $33 Billion by 2023
Some of the best utility-based stocks to buy right now are in the waste-to-energy market and it appears the juggernaut won’t be stopping for some time yet.
The market was valued at $20.86 billion (US) in 2015, and that figure is expected to rocket to around $33 billion by 2023 according to the latest analysis by Global Market Insights.
Part of the reason for the market’s success is that it’s good PR for governments and public bodies to adopt more ecologically-sound means of disposing of their waste. The experts at GSI believe that will drive a continued global growth in the market.
Thermal-based technologies have constituted a sizeable portion of the market’s revenue, and an incineration process based on thermal technology has been widely employed, and those alone could grow to $29 billion over the forecast period.
Europe is leading the way in terms of energy-from-waste market size, with major operating plants in Germany, France and UK and they comprised almost half (47%) of the total revenue share in 2015.
The European Union’s forceful approach in ensuring greenhouse gas emissions from landfills are kept to a minimum may be a factor in why Europe is so keen on the energy-from-waste market. The EU’s Renewable Energy Directive has set a binding target to use 20% of energy derived from renewable sources by 2020 and so that has probably accelerated the growth in the European market.
China, India, Indonesia and Brazil are expected to generate significant amount of municipal solid waste in the coming years so and the report says governments in those are considering investing in waste disposal and treatment techniques and are funding projects based on Public Private Partnerships.
In some communities, waste-to-energy projects are making a huge difference. Take the metropolitan city of Vantaa in Finland as an example, where the local authority has been able to slash district heating prices for residents thanks to cost savings from its waste incinerator.
The plant there currently produces almost half of the energy the city needs every year and since opening in 2014, it has burned over a million tonnes of waste.
Lassi Kortelainen, district heating service director at Vantaa Energy, told Uutiset: “We have achieved a 95-percent efficiency rate, in other words, almost all of the energy we produce is utilised as district heating and electricity.
“We were able to offer basic district heating to our customers in November and December free of charge.
“Overall, we've reached a ten percent reduction in energy charges.”
Good news for the people of Vantaa and yet more proof that waste-to-energy is here to stay.
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.