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Munduru Veera Chary, President (Projects), Jindal ECOPOLIS speaks about the salvage of MSW generated as per the Indian conditions

The total waste generation in India as per reports is 62 million tonnes annually out of which 5.6 million tonnes is plastic waste, 0.17 million tonnes is biomedical waste, 7.90 million tonnes is hazardous waste and 15 lakh tonnes is E-waste.

Based on the type of garbage generation, we should first identify and classify the garbage/waste generation as below,

• Bio- degradable waste: Food, kitchen, green, paper waste
• Recyclable waste: Paper, cardboard, glass, bottle, tins, cans, aluminium cans, metals, certain plastics, fibres, clothes, tires, batteries
• Inert: Construction & demolition (C&D) waste dirt, rocks, debris
• Electrical & Electronic waste: Electrical appliances, lights bulbs, washing machines, TV’s, computers, mobile phones
• Compost waste: Clothing, tetra packs, waste plastics
• Hazardous waste: Paints, chemicals, tires, batteries, light bulbs, fluoresces lamps, aerosol spray cans and fertilizers
• Toxic Waste: Pesticides, herbicides and fungicides
• Bio-medical waste: Expired pharmaceutical drugs
• Herbicide Waste: Chemical used in agriculture

Here we are addressing Municipal solid waste (MSW), food waste, flower market waste, vegetable market waste, slaughter waste and existing dumps (dumped with MSW).

For effective salvage of MSW, it is advised not to mix the C&D, biomedical and chlorinated plastic waste with the municipal solid waste. C&D waste causes loss of heat value.

Methods available for salvage of MSW:

1. Incineration with the technology of stoker system or CFB technology

Incineration is two types

a) Incineration of Un-segregated MSW (Mass Burn)
b) Incineration of Segregated MSW (Refused Derived Fuel – RDF)

2. Biomethanation process:

• Best suited for food waste, slaughter waste, vegetable market waste, fruit market waste, and flower market waste
• Small Scale Operation– one tonne to five tonnes, capacity – can be done with single unit
• For higher capacity, we have to go for multiple of single units

3. Bio-mining:

• Consists of bio remediation and segregation which are best suited for existing dumps
• The products generated out of bio-mining
• Refused Derived Fuel, Inert, Ferrous Material, Non-Ferrous Material, Gravel, Manure

4. Construction & Demolishing handling plant:

The main purpose of this plant is

• Salvage of C&D waste, so that the land fill is saved
• The sand can be segregated and reused as the river sand availability is going to become a scarce
• The dust generated during crushing cab be captured and used to the construction
• The gravel generated (if red bricks used) can be captured for reuse

RDF Technology vs MSW Incineration Technology


1. RDF process is an added cost to the process of incineration where unsegregated MSW is burnt efficiently
2. RDF needs Environmental Clearance since it is a material recovery facility
3. Segregation of MSW (RDF) generates pollution in and around
4. Needs more land for plant due to process of segregation of MSW
5. If by-products from segregation not utilised needs more land for landfills
6. Manual segregation is inevitable which is man power intensive and hazardous to health
7. In the Indian scenario eight projects are implemented, but all are not operational
8. RDF process is a not in operation in rest of the world
9. As plants are not in operation, the emission data is not available

Un-segregated MSW incineration (Mass Burn) Technology

1. Proven technology and more than 1200 plants in operation for the past 15 years all over the world
2. Emissions can be well controlled in compliance with more stringent European statutory norms
3. Environmental Clearance is exempted for the plants below 15MW installed power
4. High sanitation is possible
5. No human interference as there is no process of pre-segregation of MSW
6. Technology is available to utilize the residue (bottom ash, fly ash leachate) in value added products
7. Landfills 90%can be avoided
8. Open MSW dumps can be avoided fully
9. Less manpower
10. Technology limitation: Mass burn is commercially viable for minimum garbage handling capacity above 350 TPD

First incineration plant was successfully established in 1960 in Japan. The global presence of mass incineration plants in China is far greater than in India. China has over 400 plants in operation and 300 plants in pipeline. The MSW Collection from Beijing City alone per day is 24,000 TPD. Europe has over 500 and Japan has more than 200 plants. Whereas in India there are only three plants in operation: Jindal Okhla, Delhi (2000 TPD MSW handling, installed power 20MW); Ramky, Delhi (1200 TPD MSW handling, installed power 24MW) and Essel, Jabalpur (600 TPD MSW handling, installed power 6MW).

Why 400 plants are successfully operational in China:

1. Tariff Rs.6.00 per unit generation
2. Tipping fee of $ 20 per tonne for small city, $40$ for big cities
3. Net tariff `10.00 per unit generation
4. Free delivery of MSW at door step of WtE plants
5. Land allotment at free of cost
6. Long period agreements (ULB, Developer & Distribution Company) 25 years
7. No compromisation in technology and equipment selection
8. For establishment of WtE plant, the cost per MW is `25Cr
9. Separate system for handling of residues from WtE plant operations (landfill is almost nil)

The emissions from mass incineration (MSW) based power plants does not emit green house gases in comparison with Coal based thermal Power Plants. Also, a well-defined proven Flue Gas Cleaning System is available and technically feasible to meet any kind of stringent norms.

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