Clear The Air News Blog Rotating Header Image

Letter to the Editor An Immediate Solution to Hong Kong’s Pressing Waste Management Problem harbourtimes.com

Online comment on this site:

CLEAR THE AIR 14 hours ago

Clear the Air says:

It seems obvious cuckoos will be soon be extinct as they are living in Cement Cloud Cuckoo land now

“No Discernible Impact on Emission – More Environmentally Friendly”

“Net Emission will also be negligible as, according to our pilot plant study, there is no discernible impact.”

“Furthermore, there would be no residue ash (that would require land-filling) as it will be used in clinker for the manufacture of cement.”

NO FORM OF INCINERATION IS ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY

TOXIC FLYASH FORMS 10-20% OF ALL INCINERATION RESIDUES (USA EPA)

JAPAN DEEMS ALL ASH RESIDUES AS HAZARDOUS AND BANS LANDFILLING THEREOF

PEER REVIEWED REPORTS SHOW DEATH, CANCERS AND BIRTH DEFECTS IN THE VICINITIES OF INCINERATION PLANTS AND DIMINSHING WITH DISTANCE
AWAY FROM THE PLANTS

THE HK GOVT ENB BLUE PRINT IS DRASTICALLY FLAWED AS IS NOW BEING SHOWN WITH OPPOSITION OF LANDFILL EXTENTION – WHY BURY A RESOURCE ?

MSW CAN BE EXPORTED TO EUROPE WHICH HAS A MAJOR SHORTAGE OF THIS COMMODITY AND COMPETES FOR IT TO KEEP THEIR INCINERATORS OPERATIONAL

HK’S MAJOR MSW COMPONENT IS 48% PUTRESCIBLES : FOOD WASTE (42.3% / YARD WASTE 1.4% AND THE REMAINDER, NAPPIES

FOOD WASTE IN HKG IS OVER-WET WITH WET MARKET WASTE HAVING UP TO 90% MOISTURE – CAN YOU BURN WATER ?

THE CALORIFIC VALUE OF WET FOOD WASTE IS 4 (OR LESS) MJ/KG WHEREAS YOU NEED AT LEAST 6MJ/KG FOR COMBUSTION

THIS MEANS FOOD WASTE NEEDS TO BE MIXED WITH HIGHER CALORIFIC VALUE (CV) FEEDSTOCK TO ALLOW CO-COMBUSTION

IN DOING SO WOULD DEFEAT RECYCLING EFFORTS OF ITEMS WITH HIGH (CV) VALUES, WE NEED MORE ENERGY TO BURN THE WET WASTE

LOW BURN TEMPERATURES CAUSE THE FORMATION OF DIOXINS AND FURANS

FOR FOOD WASTE THE CORRECT WAY FORWARD IS ANAEROBIC DIGESTATE

FOR GENERAL WASTE, GASIFICATION WHICH HAS NO ASH RESIDUES JUST PLASMAROK THAT CAN BE USED AS ROAD AGGREGATE

Home

§ English

§ 中文

Utility Nav

JULY 8, 2013

Letter to the Editor: An Immediate Solution to Hong Kong’s Pressing Waste Management Problem

http://harbourtimes.com/openpublish/sites/default/files/styles/full_width/public/main/articles/MSW-History-and-Projections-.jpg

Hong Kong’s Pressing Waste Management Problem

At present, Hong Kong relies solely on land-filling to dispose of MSW.   As a result of the growing amount of waste generated, and a consistent failure to meet waste targets since 1997, our landfills are running out rapidly.

In response to Hong Kong’s waste management problem, the Government has rolled out a series of controversial plans starting in 1995 including landfill extensions as well as incineration technologies.   Neither of these options are well supported by the public.

The Eco-Co-Combustion System

Over the last 10 years or so, Green Island Cement (“GIC”) has repeatedly proposed to the Government our Eco-Co-Combustion System, a cost-efficient and environmentally-friendly waste management solution for the treatment of MSW.  The proposal can use either moving grate combustion technology (the technology favoured by the Government) or kiln combustion technology. Under this proposal, MSW would be used as a refuse derived fuel at our existing cement plant.   Because of the synergies, the Eco-Co-Combustion System boasts a number of benefits.

Benefits of the Eco-Co-Combustion System

No Additional Land Needed – Minimal Disturbance to Community

The most attractive point of this solution is that it will create minimal disturbance to the community and the environment, as the system will be constructed at our existing site at Tap Shek Kok and no additional land has to be reclaimed nor set aside for a waste treatment facility.

Process More Waste

In addition, more waste can be processed than the Government’s planned incinerator as it could treat up to 4,800 tonnes of MSW per day, i.e. about 50% of Hong Kong’s MSW per day, as opposed to the Government’s proposal of around 3,000 tonnes per day.

No Discernible Impact on Emission – More Environmentally Friendly

Net Emission will also be negligible as, according to our pilot plant study, there is no discernible impact.

Furthermore, there would be no residue ash (that would require land-filling) as it will be used in clinker for the manufacture of cement.

Substantially Lower Cost

In terms of cost, the system presents a significant saving of more than HK$9 billion upfront and HK$70 million per year in tipping fees as compared to the conventional incinerator which the Government is proposing at Shek Kwu Chau.  (Upfront cost of the Government’s incinerator is HK$15 billion and annual tipping fees are HK$353 million).

Can Be Commissioned Quickly

We are also confident that the technology can be rolled out a lot quicker than the Government’s proposed incinerator.   This is because the system utilizes GIC’s existing cement plant site as a cement related activity, and, therefore, a lot of the infrastructure is already in place.   Once the Environmental Impact Assessment and BD approvals are completed, we are confident that the Eco-Co-Combustion System can be completed very quickly.

Extensive Overseas Experience May Be a Good Reference for Hong Kong

GIC’s holding company, Cheung Kong Infrastructure Holdings Limited (“CKI”),hasinvestments in environmental initiativeswhich possess extensive waste management initiatives and experience.

CKI has recently made a foray into the Dutch waste management industry.   In June 2013, a consortium led by CKI has entered into an agreement to acquire AVR, the largest energy-from-waste player in the Netherlands.   AVR operates two waste treatment plants which encompasses facilities to generate steam, electricity and heat from the incineration process.

In New Zealand, CKI owns EnviroWaste, one of the country’s leading waste management operators which operates a major refuse collection service and the largest landfill in New Zealand.

In the UK, CKI’s Northumbrian Wateroperates two advanced anaerobic digestion plants for the treatment of sludge and putrescible waste.   It is the first water company in the country which uses over 99% of its sludge to produce renewable energy.

These industry leaders may be able to deliver insights into a solution for Hong Kong’s waste management problem.

Government Should Respond to the Community’s Concerns and Seek a Better Solution

Many well-developed countries around the world face increasing waste loads, while they also present good examples of how the private sector can contribute to easing the waste problem in a cost-effective way.   It may be time that the Hong Kong Government considers not confining waste management to public service.

GIC’s Eco-Co-Combustion model represents a good opportunity for the private sector to participate in Hong Kong’s environmental development.   Unfortunately, despite the obvious benefits of our Eco-Co-Combustion proposal, the Government has yet to grant us an opportunity to contribute in solving Hong Kong’s waste management problem.

We urge the Government to reconsider the benefits of GIC’s Eco-Co-Combustion System proposal and let us participate in the tender.

Hong Kong’s Pressing Waste Management Problem

At present, Hong Kong relies solely on land-filling to dispose of MSW.   As a result of the growing amount of waste generated, and a consistent failure to meet waste targets since 1997, our landfills are running out rapidly.

In response to Hong Kong’s waste management problem, the Government has rolled out a series of controversial plans starting in 1995 including landfill extensions as well as incineration technologies.   Neither of these options are well supported by the public.

The Eco-Co-Combustion System

Over the last 10 years or so, Green Island Cement (“GIC”) has repeatedly proposed to the Government our Eco-Co-Combustion System, a cost-efficient and environmentally-friendly waste management solution for the treatment of MSW.  The proposal can use either moving grate combustion technology (the technology favoured by the Government) or kiln combustion technology. Under this proposal, MSW would be used as a refuse derived fuel at our existing cement plant.   Because of the synergies, the Eco-Co-Combustion System boasts a number of benefits.

Benefits of the Eco-Co-Combustion System

No Additional Land Needed – Minimal Disturbance to Community

The most attractive point of this solution is that it will create minimal disturbance to the community and the environment, as the system will be constructed at our existing site at Tap Shek Kok and no additional land has to be reclaimed nor set aside for a waste treatment facility.

Process More Waste

In addition, more waste can be processed than the Government’s planned incinerator as it could treat up to 4,800 tonnes of MSW per day, i.e. about 50% of Hong Kong’s MSW per day, as opposed to the Government’s proposal of around 3,000 tonnes per day.

No Discernible Impact on Emission – More Environmentally Friendly

Net Emission will also be negligible as, according to our pilot plant study, there is no discernible impact.

Furthermore, there would be no residue ash (that would require land-filling) as it will be used in clinker for the manufacture of cement.

Substantially Lower Cost

In terms of cost, the system presents a significant saving of more than HK$9 billion upfront and HK$70 million per year in tipping fees as compared to the conventional incinerator which the Government is proposing at Shek Kwu Chau.  (Upfront cost of the Government’s incinerator is HK$15 billion and annual tipping fees are HK$353 million).

Can Be Commissioned Quickly

We are also confident that the technology can be rolled out a lot quicker than the Government’s proposed incinerator.   This is because the system utilizes GIC’s existing cement plant site as a cement related activity, and, therefore, a lot of the infrastructure is already in place.   Once the Environmental Impact Assessment and BD approvals are completed, we are confident that the Eco-Co-Combustion System can be completed very quickly.

Extensive Overseas Experience May Be a Good Reference for Hong Kong

GIC’s holding company, Cheung Kong Infrastructure Holdings Limited (“CKI”),hasinvestments in environmental initiativeswhich possess extensive waste management initiatives and experience.

CKI has recently made a foray into the Dutch waste management industry.   In June 2013, a consortium led by CKI has entered into an agreement to acquire AVR, the largest energy-from-waste player in the Netherlands.   AVR operates two waste treatment plants which encompasses facilities to generate steam, electricity and heat from the incineration process.

In New Zealand, CKI owns EnviroWaste, one of the country’s leading waste management operators which operates a major refuse collection service and the largest landfill in New Zealand.

In the UK, CKI’s Northumbrian Wateroperates two advanced anaerobic digestion plants for the treatment of sludge and putrescible waste.   It is the first water company in the country which uses over 99% of its sludge to produce renewable energy.

These industry leaders may be able to deliver insights into a solution for Hong Kong’s waste management problem.

Government Should Respond to the Community’s Concerns and Seek a Better Solution

Many well-developed countries around the world face increasing waste loads, while they also present good examples of how the private sector can contribute to easing the waste problem in a cost-effective way.   It may be time that the Hong Kong Government considers not confining waste management to public service.

GIC’s Eco-Co-Combustion model represents a good opportunity for the private sector to participate in Hong Kong’s environmental development.   Unfortunately, despite the obvious benefits of our Eco-Co-Combustion proposal, the Government has yet to grant us an opportunity to contribute in solving Hong Kong’s waste management problem.

We urge the Government to reconsider the benefits of GIC’s Eco-Co-Combustion System proposal and let us participate in the tender.

Don Johnston
Executive Director
Green Island Cement (Holdings) Limited

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *