Waste Management Industry

MGM Innova has extensive experience in the identification and development of projects related to waste management worldwide:

  • We have developed hundreds of project screenings in the Americas, Africa, Eastern Europe and Asia.
  • We have produced feasibility studies for projects in the America's, Africa, Eastern Europe and Asia.
  • We have been involved successfully in the registration and carbon credit commercialization of at least 10 Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects in the waste handling and disposal sector and we have more under development.
  • We have provided engineering services to a handful of landfill gas recovery and use projects in South America.
Waste management background

Millions of tons of solid waste are generated daily across the world leading to significant amounts of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, mainly methane. Typically, methane (CH4) is the largest source of GHG emissions from solid waste. CH4 produced at solid waste disposal sites contributes with approximately 3% to 4% of the annual global anthropogenic GHG emissions (IPCC, 2001).

In addition to CH4, solid waste handling and disposal produces biogenic carbon dioxide (CO2), non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOCs) and smaller amounts of nitrous oxide (N2O), other nitrogen oxides (NOx) and carbon monoxide (CO).

CH4 and N2O are two major GHGs, with a Global Warming Potential (GWP) of 21 and 310 times that of CO2 respectively.

Waste management and GHG emission reduction opportunities

In many cases, CH4 and N2O emissions associated with waste management can be significantly reduced. Examples of project opportunities that could achieve these reductions include:

Landfill gas projects where:

  • The captured gas is flared;
  • The captured gas is used to produce energy (e.g. electricity/thermal energy); and
  • The captured gas is used to supply consumers through natural gas distribution network.

Emission reductions are achieved by destroying/combusting CH4 present in the landfill gas (LFG) and additional emission reduction benefits can be realized by displacing fossil fuel use if the LFG is used for its inherent energy value.

Alternative solid waste treatment processes where fresh waste, originally intended for landfilling, is treated either through one or a combination of the following process:

  • Composting: controlled biological decomposition of organic matter under aerobic conditions.
  • Gasification: process that converts carbonaceous materials, into carbon monoxide and hydrogen by reacting the raw material, at high temperatures with a controlled amount of oxygen and/or steam. The resulting gas mixture is called synthesis gas or syngas, a fuel.
  • Anaerobic digestion: controlled decomposition of organic matter under anaerobic conditions.
  • Incineration: the incineration of waste materials converts the waste into incinerator bottom ash, flue gases, particulates and heat, which can in turn be used to generate electric power.
  • Refuse-Derived Fuel (RDF) processing/thermal treatment: RDF is a fuel produced by shredding and dehydrating municipal solid waste (MSW) in a converter or steam pressure treating in an autoclave. RDF consists largely of organic components of MSW such as plastics and biodegradable waste.
Benefits of implementing waste management projects

  • Reduction of emissions of CH4, N2O and toxic gases.
  • Generation of additional income through the sale of emission reductions in the carbon market.
  • Contribution to sustainable development through technology transfer and job creation. Landfill gas projects and alternative solid waste treatment options create jobs associated with the design, construction, and operation of the systems. Much of the construction and development funding is spent locally.
  • Improvement of environmental conditions.

Related Projects

  • Landfill Gas Recovery and Flaring
    Promotora Ambiental S.A. de C.V.
  • Caieiras Landfill Gas Emission Reduction
  • Organic Waste
    Biorganicos del Otun S.A E.S.P.