Power plant to convert landfill waste energy

Power plant to convert landfill waste energy

WA could be the first state in Australia to set up a power plant that will convert industrial and residential landfill waste to energy.

Perth-based company, New Energy Corporation, plans to build a $200 million facility in Rockingham if it is approved by the Environmental Protection Authority.

The plant would handle more than 130,000 tonnes of residential and industrial waste per year.

NEC’s general manager Jason Pugh says that would generate enough energy to power 15,000 homes.

“Essentially we’re going for waste that will otherwise always go to landfill,” he said.

“So, we understand that recycling is the most important step in waste management and we’re filling that void between recycling and landfilling.”

Mr Pugh says emission levels would be far below the legal limit.

“Essentially, what we do is convert the waste into a gas and then we fire that natural gas to create electricity so the emissions from the plant are very, very similar to a gas-fired power station,” he said.

“So, not only are we doing something better with the waste but we’re recovering that lost energy as well.”

The Sustainable Energy Association’s Ray Wills has welcomed the proposal.

“I would have had a concern 30 years ago but we’ve got great technology now,” he said.

“Technology that means that we really don’t need to be worried about the emissions from a plant like this.”

If approved, the plant is expected to be running by late 2014.

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