Waste To Energy

Overview

The increasing industrialization, urbanization and changes in the pattern of life, which accompany the process of economic growth, give rise to generation of increasing quantities of wastes leading to increased threats to the environment. In recent years, technologies have been developed that not only help in generating substantial quantity of decentralized energy but also in reducing the quantity of waste for its safe disposal.

The Ministry is promoting all the technology options available for setting up projects for recovery of energy in the form of Biogas/BioCNG/Electricity from agricultural, Industrial and urban wastes of renewable nature such as municipal solid wastes, vegetable and other market wastes, slaughterhouse waste, agricultural residues and industrial/STP wastes & effluents.

 

1.1 Types of Waste

There are different types of waste which are generated from our daily or industrial activities such as organic waste, e-waste, hazardous waste, inert waste etc. Organic waste refers to waste which degrades or broken down by microorganisms over time. All organic wastes are essentially carbon based compounds; though they may be diverse in nature and have different degradation rate. Organic waste has significant portion in overall waste generation in industrial/urban/ agricultural sector and therefore it can be used for energy generation.

The organic fraction of waste can be further classified as non-biodegradable and biodegradable organic waste

 

Biodegradable waste consists of organics that can be utilized for food by naturally occurring micro- organisms within a reasonable length of time. The biodegradable organic comprise of agro residue, food processing rejections, municipal solid waste (food waste, leaves from garden waste, paper, cloths/ rags etc.), waste from poultry farms, cattle farm slaughter houses, dairy, sugar, distillery, paper, oil extraction plant, starch processing and leather industries.

Non-Biodegradable organic materials are organics resistant to biological degradation or have a very low degradation rate. This primarily includes woody plants, Cardboard, cartonscontainers, wrappings, pouches, discarded clothing, wooden furniture, agricultural dry waste, bagasse, rice husk etc.

 

1.2 Technologies avaliable

Waste-to-Energy (WTE) technologies to recover the energy from the waste in the form of Electricity and Biogas/Syngas are given as below:

BIOMETHANATION

Biomethanation is anaerobic digestion of organic materials which is converted into biogas. Anaerobic digestion (AD) is a bacterial fermentation process that operates without free oxygen and results in a biogas containing mostly methane (~60%), carbon dioxide (~40%) and other gases. Biomethanation has dual benefits. It gives biogas as well as manure as end product.

This technology can be conveniently employed in a decentralized manner for biodegradation of segregated organic wet wastes such as wastes from kitchens, canteens, institutions, hotels, and slaughter houses and vegetables markets.

The biogas generated from Biomethanation process can be burned directly in a gas boiler/burner to produce heat for thermal application industries and cooking or burnt in a gas engine to produce electricity. Alternatively, the biogas can be cleaned to remove the carbon dioxide and other substances, to produce BioCNG. This can be injected into the national gas grid to be used in the same way as natural gas, or used as a vehicle fuel.

By using Biomethanation process, 20-25kgs of Cattle dung can generate about 1m3 of biogas and further 1m3 of Biogas has potential to generate 2 units of electricity or 0.4kgs of BioCNG.

INCINERATION:

Incineration technology is complete combustion of waste (Municipal Solid Waste or Refuse derived fuel) with the recovery of heat to produce steam that in turn produces power through steam turbines.

The flue gases produced in the boilers have to be treated by an elaborate air pollution control system. The resultant ash from incineration of solid waste can be used as construction material after necessary processing while the residue can be safely disposed of in a landfill.

This technology is well established technology and has been deployed in many projects successfully at commercial level in India to treat solid wastes like Municipal Solid Waste and Industrial solid Waste etc. and generate electricity.

GASIFICATION

Gasification is a process that uses high temperatures (500-1800o C) in the presence of limited amounts of oxygen to decompose materials to produce synthetic gas (a mixture of carbon monoxide (CO) and hydrogen (H2)). Biomass, agro-residues, Segregated MSW and RDF pellets are used in the gasifier to produce Syngas. This gas further can be used for thermal or power generation purposes

The purpose of gasification of waste is to generate power more efficiently at lower power level (< 2MW) and also to minimize emissions and hence it is an attractive alternative for the thermal treatment of solid waste.

PYROLYSIS

Pyrolysis uses heat to break down combustible materials in the absence of oxygen, producing a mixture of combustible gases (primarily methane, complex hydrocarbons, hydrogen, and carbon monoxide), liquids and solid residues. The products of pyrolysis process are: (i) a gas mixture; (ii) a liquid (bio-oil/tar); (iii) a solid residue (carbon black). The gas generated by either of these processes can be used in boilers to provide heat, or it can be cleaned up and used in combustion turbine generators.  The purpose of pyrolysis of waste is to minimize emissions and to maximize the gain.

1.3 Potential

Summary of the sector wise covering urban and industrial sectors mainly for energy potential for India is given as below:

 

Sl N

Sectors

Energy potential – MW

1

Urban Solid Waste

1247

2

Urban Liquid waste

375

3

Paper (liquid waste)

254

4

Processing and preserving of meat (liquid waste)

182

5

Processing and preserving of meat (solid waste)

13

6

Processing and preserving of fish, crustaceans and molluscs

 ( liquid waste)

17

7

Vegetable Processing (solid waste)

3

8

Vegetable Raw(solid waste)

579

9

Fruit Processing (solid waste)

8

10

Fruit Raw (solid waste)

203

11

Palm Oil (solid waste)

2

12

Milk Processing/Dairy Products (liquid waste)

24

13

Maize Starch (liquid waste)

47

14

Tapioca Starch (liquid waste)

36

15

Tapioca Starch (solid waste)

15

16

Sugar (liquid waste)

49

17

Sugar press mud (solid waste)

200

18

Distillery (liquid waste)

781

19

Wine Industry

NA

20

Slaughterhouse (solid waste)

48

21

Slaughterhouse (liquid waste)

263

22

Cattle farm (solid waste)

862

23

Poultry (solid waste)

462

24

Chicory (solid waste)

1

25

Tanneries (liquid waste)

9

26

Tanneries (solid waste)

10

Total (MWeq)

5690


The total estimated energy generation potential from urban and industrial organic waste in India is approximately 5690 MW. 

 


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