02/02/2015 - 14:54

Waste-to-energy plant gets EPA approval

02/02/2015 - 14:54

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Perth-based Phoenix Energy’s $380 million waste-to-energy facility at the Kwinana Industrial Area has been recommended for conditional approval by the Environmental Protection Authority.

Waste-to-energy plant gets EPA approval
Architectural concept design for Phoenix Energy's Kwinana Waste to Energy facility.

Perth-based Phoenix Energy’s $380 million waste-to-energy facility at the Kwinana Industrial Area has been recommended for conditional approval by the Environmental Protection Authority.

The facility will have the capacity to receive and process up to 400,000 tonnes of household waste, which the EPA says is enough to produce up to 36 megawatts of electricity for the South West Interconnected System and power about 46,000 homes.

EPA chairman Paul Vogel said the proposal, which includes a waste receiving area, two fully-automated furnaces, a steam system with electricity generation, and a flue gas stack was assessed at the authority’s most rigorous level.

If approved, he said, the facility would use advanced combustion technology similar to commercial facilities already operating successfully in Japan and Europe.

“The plant would use proven technologies to minimise the discharge of pollutants to the atmosphere and would be required to meet stringent emissions limits specified by the European Union’s waste incineration directive,” Dr Vogel said.

The residual solid waste collected from households will be the primary fuel source for the plant.

Waste delivered to the plant will be fed through a combustion system to produce heat, which will then be used in the plant’s boilers to produce high-pressure steam to will drive a turbine, creating electricity.

The EPA has recommended several conditions on the facility.

“Waste types strictly not permitted to be processed include medical and radioactive waste, asbestos, contaminated soils, tyres, animal carcasses and highly corrosive or toxic liquids or gases,” Dr Vogel said.

“Commercial, industrial, construction and demolitions wastes will also not be permitted.”

Dr Vogel also said the facility aimed to reuse ash produced in the combustion process to make by-products such as bricks and pavers.

Last year, Business News reported Phoenix Energy had sorted funding for the project, and John Holland had completed front-end engineering and design of the facility.

The plant is planned for construction in 2016.

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