Virtual Summit Review

300 senior waste-to-energy leaders joined us for two days of live interactive discussions, small-group roundtable discussions and 1-1 networking, connecting all players within the waste-to-energy supply chain.

Check out our summit highlights below. The summit is still live until November 7, so you can follow up with new connections, reach out to anyone you missed via the 1-1 video meeting system, and watch the content on demand whenever it suits you.

Who Joined Us?

Welcome Address

A welcome address from the UK highlighting business opportunities in waste to energy

“There is going to be a need for new efw projects in the next 10 years – still an increased demand for treating residual waste, still an incentive to diverge from landfill. Funders, local authorities and waste management providers want proven technology that will provide a sustainable and reliable solution.”

“There is plenty of room for innovation in waste to energy.”

Neil Grundon, Deputy Chairman, GRUNDON WASTE MANAGEMENT LTD, UK

Industry Leaders’ Debate

Capitalising on the current global market boom – the role of waste to energy in tackling the waste crisis and meeting climate change targets

“A fascinating panel looking at global market opportunities for EfW in light of decarbonisation and climate change debates. A huge thank you to my panellists for sharing their insights. Key trends identified include: heat offtake carbon capture and storage thermal efficiency, fuel production, collaboration colocation and the right regulatory and planning frameworks to drive investment.”

Adam Read, Senior Vice President, CIWM, UK

“We should also consider other geographies in Africa and global south. The opportunity for projects in these parts of the world are massive – we have the problems we are all familiar with – regulation / stable political frameworks but in these geographies there is a strong connection between peoples lives and waste going to landfill.

If we want to realise the opportunity in those geographies we need to take serious considerations of the socioeconomic issues. We cant remove the waste stream and not think about the people who live of it.”

Isabel Boira-Segarra, CEO, FUTURE EARTH ENERGY, UK

“Even now with having the committed subsidy on energy with gasification for a while it is one thing to have the subsidy, but it has to still operate and function. Waste is a difficult fuel to process. A government incentive for a small scale project is proving itself.”

Tom Koltis, Executive Director, COVANTA UK

“There is a need for significant more capacity in the UK and we want to be a part of it. And we are making this a reality as we speak.”

Phil Piddington, Managing Director, VIRIDOR, UK

International Market Opportunities

Reports on new waste to energy infrastructure projects in global markets

“By leveraging our five points in one line process model we target to realise the harmless treatment, reduction and reuse of water and ultimately facilitate the development of zero-waste cities. We are currently making great efforts to promote this model in China.”

Prof. Wang TianyiCEO, CHINA EVERBRIGHT INTERNATIONAL, CHINA

“Once completed in 2025, this plant will be Singapore’s most efficient waste treatment facility and bring us one step closer to realising the vision of a zero waste nation.”

Horng Ming Lok, Principal Engineer, NEA SINAGPORE

Investor Debate

Defining the current appetite for investment in waste to energy

“We are expecting stricter guidelines on greener projects. Frameworks embed climate risk. In future I expect it to be even more stringent criteria within the process. We have seen a lot of appetite for renewables and anything considered green.”

Simone Aroni, Senior Manager, Project and Infrastructure Finance, INDUSTRIAL AND COMMERCIAL BANK OF CHINA, UK

“Selling to the grid makes the project even more efficient. Municipalities are strained and revenues are down so it is important to see if there is a way to evolve business. The more revenue sources you find the more affordable it becomes for the population and increases buy-in.”

Susan Goeransson, Director Infrastructure Europe, EUROPEAN BANK FOR RECONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT, UK

“We have a very developed ESG strategy for each project. For waste to energy facilities it is slightly easier on the environmental side as you avoid landfill and create energy. Each project needs a viable heat offtake. We are concerned about the social impact – we ensure there are local employment schemes going on and educational days for schools to attend to understand what a waste to energy facility is. We have started seeing a lot more importance on ESG from investors.”

Julia SafiullinaInvestment Manager, IONA CAPITAL, UK

“Projects are designed to fit the need – our preference is to replicate the Belgrade project which took many years working upstream with municipalities and stakeholders and put in place the financing. We definitely need scale. It is important to right size these projects. There is a lot of scrutiny that w2e is competing with recycling / diversion projects. We want to maximise recycling and diversion and not taking recyclable feedstock to feed the plant. We are also looking at smaller projects in Sri Lanka. With small scale CAPEX and the right revenue model in place we are willing to look at them.”

James Michelsen, Senior Industry Specialist – Waste, INTERNATIONAL FINANCE CORPORATION, USA

Gasification

A new wave of projects

 

 

“We are in our infancy, there is a long way to go, we are probably talking a couple of decades before technology is more established and can be scaled up.”

Paco Hevia, Managing Director, AMEY WASTE TREATMENT, UK

“I thoroughly enjoyed the World Waste to Energy and Resources Summit and the many compelling discussions on the growth of conventional energy stemming from the waste industry and the focus on addressing the UK’s landfill diversion ambitions. The interest in advanced technologies was prevalent though-out. And while these technologies are far from conventional in the eyes of the finance community, government support will be required for the sector to cross the commercialisation gap. Together, we can create a future where waste to chemicals technologies play a significant role in the energy transition.”

Kerry McKenna, Global Director, Energy TechnologiesHATCH, UK

“I think things are going to accelerate over the next decade but we are still 20 years away from seeing this meeting half of our production needs in terms of the opportunity that is available.”

Jesse KlinkhamerCEOKLEAN INDUSTRIES, CANADA

“A drop in the ocean compared to the amount of energy we use. It will only be a small part of the decarbonisation solution. If you build a plant now it will have an impact for 20 years, so it is key to decide the final target for the waste to energy industry.”

Andy Cornell, Chief Executive, ADVANCED BIOFUEL SOLUTIONS, UK

A Compelling Business Case for Gasification: The path to accelerate the tipping point for adoption

“A collaborative approach has to start from the beginning and the longer you work with an EPC the more you can have discussions with them and the more you can have an integrated solution with them, that also works from a price point of view and from the economics of the project.”

David Palumbo, CEO, EQTEC, UK 

Innovation Showcase

Delivering low carbon fuels from waste and the role for Carbon Capture and Storage

“Project BRIGHT is based at the centre of the hyNET project which is the UK’s leading CCS and hydrogen cluster With Co2 storage in disused gas fields offshore from Liverpool. The facility can take 10 million tons per annum of Co2 and project BRIGHT is centred at the heart of the facility.”


Chris Manson-Whitton, Director, PROGRESSIVE ENERGY, UK

Rethinking Partnership Models

Rethinking Partnership Models and Risk Sharing: Exploring a collaborative approach to project success

“You need a partnership model where you can have a transparent discussion and you are working collaboratively to complete the project. Our technology is sound so we are continuing to evolve and push the technology forward. A risk sharing model is where both entities are pushing for the same thing.”

Jimmy Morgan, Chief Operating Officer, BABCOCK & WILCOX RENEWABLE

“We need to be sure we are sharing the risk in a balanced, fair and equitable way.”

Christophe Cord’hommeBusiness and Products Development Director, CNIM GROUP, FRANCE

“People that are taking on the risk should be the ones who have the best understanding of it. It isn’t always reasonable for the financiers to take this on.”

Allan Vlah, Director of Infrastructure Equity, AVIVA INVESTORS, UK

Regulation

Analysis of the current policy landscape in the UK and Europe

“Waste to energy is often treated emotionally and not about facts. We need to get fact-based decision-making into the policy making and regulation.

There is a need to deal with non recyclable waste and waste to energy is the best option to use in the meantime.”

Jacob Hayler, Executive Director, ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES ASSOCIATION, UK

“Our problem is how to convey things in a simple manner that the public can appreciate and the public can support. Specifically in very technical areas – most people discard rubbish and because they have discarded it then It has no value. There is a real task to change perceptions.”

Tim Walker, Acting CEO, ARC 21, NORTHERN IRELAND

“It is all about the options and choices you have to dispose of residual waste – what do you do with it – society is evolving to more and more and singular households with more waste generated from other sources, so how do you achieve 65% recycling challenge? We will achieve it but we have quite some work to get there.”

Patrick Clerens, Secretary General, ESWET, BELGIUM

International Market Opportunities

Reports on new waste to energy infrastructure projects in global markets

“There is significant scope for technology suppliers, project developers and financial institutions globally in areas to become a part of India’s waste management industry to partner with Indian enterprises specialised in addressing the country’s unique waste management issues.”

Pankaj Patel, President and Member of the Board, ABELLON CLEANENERGY, INDIA

“The Indonesian government will implement the city-scale of waste to energy plants in 12 cities in Indonesia, as an effort to overcome environmental problems and reduce greenhouse gases.”

Rudi Nugroho, Director of the Center for Environmental Technology, BPPT, INDONESIA

“We want to be ahead of the pack and a leader in sustainable industrial development in the three steps towards a carbon neutral industrial cluster, but we cannot do it alone. We are always interested to look at partners – either from a supply chain, manufacturing or procurement perspective to see if we can get industrial projects going.”

Stijn Effting, Business Manager Chemical and Bio-Based Industries, PORT OF ROTTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS

Project Success

What are the value drivers for long-term project success?

“You need to build for the long term and you need to build the plan well.

The real success factors are things like availability and long-term operation and you need to pay for that. It is very short sighted to try and build these plants with too low CAPEX. It is worth spending money at the outset if you want it to work well.”

John Weatherby, Managing Director, FICHTNER CONSULTING ENGINEERS, UK

 

“Power revenues could evolve as we decarbonize – if you think to previous years the idea would be to run an EfW plant non-stop. In the future dynamics are changing and we see more and more of a price spread, higher and higher incidents of where the power is oversupplied as we have more and more renewables. We are seeing more examples of negative prices in the power market.

Some flexibility to optimise plants is warranted and could change how EfW plants are optimised. We need to optimise downtime and maintenance to fit in with this.”

Richard Howard, Research Director, AURORA ENERGY RESEARCH, UK

“Many projects focus on the short term cost v long term resilience and viability of the project and equipment.”

“Heat is a wonderful opportunity especially if it is low pressure district heating, as long as there is a network to build to.”

Ute Fleck, Head of Sales EPC, CNIM GROUP, FRANCE

Addressing the Plastics Issue

The role of advanced conversion technologies in tackling the global plastics crisis

“Consumers do care more and more about what happens to their plastics and how they are dealt with. It would help if we could move away from the culture that we pass on responsibility to the next player in the supply chain.”

Manuel Abellan, Councillor & Chair of the Environment Committee, SUTTON COUNCIL, UK

“Plastic Energy has proven it is possible to operate our plants at a large scale. We have made an agreement with Viridor in Scotland and there are other projects to come. It takes up to 1 year for permission and a few years to build the facilities, we have plants in the pipeline.”

Carlos Monreal, CEO, PLASTIC ENERGY, SPAIN

“Our overall aim for everything that we do is to build a circular economy and ultimately preserve scarce raw materials. Partnerships across the industry are essential to building a circular economy for plastics.”

Pauline Metivier, Innovation Manager, VEOLIA, UK

“Our global team has worked for almost 20 years to perfect our advanced thermochemical process that converts organic waste into renewable hydrogen, which is carbon-neutral by itself and carbon-negative when paired with carbon capture and storage. The Summit was a great opportunity to exchange ideas and information, and start conversations about developing waste to hydrogen projects in Europe.”

Jean-Louis Kindler, CEO, WAYS2H, USA

Transport Fuel

Could this be the most valuable resource to be produced from waste?

“Our project is about converting waste – municipal solid waste, commercial and industrial waste into sustainable aviation fuel to address the decarbonisation challenge. We see that waste as a valuable feedstock and it is important we can take any waste. We are taking residual waste that would only have two destinations, landfill or energy from waste incineration. It’s about moving the waste sector to the next generation.”

Neville Hargreaves, VP Waste to Fuels, VELOCYS, UK

“In the rest of Europe about 14% of gas going into vehicles is renewable. In the UK we have definitely tipped over 90% coming from a renewable source. The challenge on the economic sense is building the base plants , the RTFO mechanism is a variable price – so it has no floor price, which does create a challenge in terms of bankability.”

David HurrenUK CEO, AIR LIQUIDE BIOGAS SOLUTIONS EUROPE, UK

“When recovery happens it needs to happen in a sustainable so as a sustainable fuels industry we should use this to develop facilities.

I think hydrogen will play a role in the future, but it is several decades away. Kerosene-based fuels are going to be here for at least the next 30 years so we should embrace sustainable aviation fuels, encourage the development, bring the support we need from both government and private sector to enable the planet and more locally the UK government to achieve its 2030 net zero ambitions  – I think it is very doable.”

Jeff Ovens, Managing Director, FULCRUM, UK

Investment

New approaches to funding downstream plants

“It feels like we are in a transition period in this sector where traditional combustion technologies are well proven that in the past investors would favour, but now investors are considering newer technologies – but these have issues with proof of technology.”

Charlotte EddingtonInvestments Director, ABUNDANCE INVESTMENT, UK

“The emerging technology and changes in the way waste might be dealt with is one of the many challenges for us an as investor. They need to be viable for 25+ years for them to be invested in. Unless the feedstock can be guaranteed it can be a difficult decision.”

Jonathan Boss, Partner, DOWNING LLP, UK

“Unless we can eliminate waste streams totally, we will have a problem with waste and the issue then is how can we extract the most value from that waste and it seems to me that energy from waste is a very viable transitional approach to that.”

Richard Burrett, Chief Sustainability Officer, EARTH CAPITAL, UK

Audience Insights