NEC’s solid waste-to-energy projects produce electric power through intelligent and renewable use of energy sources that are considered waste or a nuisance. A typical NEC waste-to-energy plant provides 50 to 100+ MW of electric power capacity from municipal solid waste that would otherwise go directly into a landfill. Such projects may be located near the source of municipal waste or near an existing landfill to leverage existing collection systems.

NEC’s waste-to-energy plants are designed to operate 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, to provide a base-loaded power source. Depending upon the design, the project may operate from municipal solid waste only, providing an effective method of disposing of the waste, or in a hybrid design utilizing municipal solid waste as the primary energy source combined with a secondary energy source. In either case, the NEC’s design ensures clean power generation that supports environmental objectives.


Highlights of NEC’s municipal solid waste-to-energy design: 


  1. On average, these projects reduce the volume of solid waste by over 92% and thus greatly extend the life of landfills.

  2. NEC’s solid waste-to-energy plants are designed to accept from 500 tons to 4000 tons per day (1,500,000+ tons per year) of specified municipal solid waste.

  3. NEC projects leverage existing municipal waste handling and collection systems, and infrastructure to provide economic and environmental value to existing municipal investments.

  4. The design incorporates advanced emission systems for SOx, NOx, HCl control, and particulates. The typical removal efficiency is 70% for both SOx and HCl.

  5. These projects develop local expertise in both municipal solid waste handling and power generation, helping to build careers and strengthen the economies for local communities. Renewable technologies are suited to rural and remote areas, where energy is often crucial in human development.

  6. Due to the volume and availability of solid waste and landfills, NEC’s standardized plant design allow regional authorities to endorse a series of waste-to-energy power plants, and to develop a larger scale solid waste strategy that addresses current and future environmental goals. 


Environmental Benefits 


Projects utilizing municipal solid waste as an energy source for electricity have an immediate benefit due to the reduction in the size of the solid waste itself. The processing and handling within the plant reduces the original size of the solid waste by 92-96%. This directly translates into an environmental benefit by significantly extending the life of local landfills and reducing the demand for new greenfield landfills.

NEC’s municipal solid waste-to-energy plant designs are integrated with advanced process technology to reduce critical emissions, including SOx and HCl (the leading causes of acid rain), NOx (leading cause of smog and health hazards), and particulates. Together, NEC projects can reduce emissions of the harmful compounds by up to 70%, well below the guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

In addition, NEC’s advanced design significantly reduces emissions of dioxins and other toxic compounds typically associated with older solid waste projects to levels far below emission requirements. NEC’s solid waste-to-energy projects may also provide options to integrate with municipal recyclable materials programs, thereby increasing their overall effectiveness and positive impact on the environment.