Gasification Growing in Waste Processing” (2020/02/07/the-future-of-
Please see the attached link to an interview with me by Katerina Ploumidaki, published in Ethnikos Kirikas (National Herald) of the US/UK last June.
Hello K., further to our earlier correspondence, I finally found more tangible information on Sierra Energy and other Gasification processes in the CNBC documentary. It is well done and mentions three processes that have spent , in development, hundreds of million of dollars. Two of them are based on using pure oxygen which then produces heat by partial combustion of the waste. The third uses a “plasma torch” which uses electricity to produce heat. All three require the use of electricity and are based on partial combustion. Therefore, the process gas must be cleaned as well as that of the conventional WTE process which is based on complete combustion of wastes and produces electricity and also ferrous and non-ferrous metals (not mentioned in CNBC video). There is no way that these complex operations can survive economically, when the feedstock is the usual mixed MSW of the U.S, (calorific value= 10 MJ/kg). They have a much better chance if they use as feedstock the millions of tons of mixed plastics that are no more accepted by China (calorific value 30 MJ/kg).
However, as long as there are investors (e.g., Gates) who supply “start-up” money, they will try again and again, as there has been the case with PLASCO, as noted in your video) and the plasma process of Alter Energy which lost Aur Product and Chemicals and partners $900 million at the Teeside (UK) gasification plant that is now closed. The good thing about the video is that it highlights the major contribution of landfills to climate change. If CNBC ever want to produce a video on WTE that is actually working (>1000 plants globally) let me know, we have collected tons of information.