Identifying competent agencies for WTE projects a challenge

The risks involved and the low calorific value of the municipal solid waste generated in the State remain as challenges in identifying competent agencies for implementing Waste-to-Energy (WTE) projects, according to the government.

Stating that there are only limited players in the sector, the authorities pointed out that the feedback received from prospective bidders revealed that the element of risk associated with WTE sector is much high compared to infrastructure development projects in other sectors.

Hurdles in the collection and segregation of waste continue to be another challenge. As per the tender, the participating local bodies are responsible for the primary collection of solid waste from households and other establishments within the project cluster.

Waste from primary sources will be deposited in bins being provided by the firm chosen at secondary collection points. It is responsible for the secondary collection from secondary collection points, transportation to the processing facility and the scientific processing of solid waste as per rules.

The majority of the players in the sector are not in a position to take the responsibility of collection and transportation of waste. The scope of collection and transportation also impacted the total project cost as the project is based on the design-build-finance-operate-transfer mode.

The bidders informed that the success of waste-to-energy projects depends on the characteristics of municipal solid waste in the State. The generation of power mainly depends on the calorific value of the waste.

The firms or consortium are under the impression that the calorific value of municipal solid waste in the State is quite less compared to other States in the country.

Though the tender provides a commitment from the government side for the supply of minimum quantity of waste, bidders feel that the quantity required is not available for the viable operation of the plant.

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