Australia’s first thermal Waste to Energy plant

by Tiffany Paczek
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Australia will soon have a large-scale thermal Waste to Energy (WtE) plant. Worldwide supplier of sustainable infrastructure solutions and renewable energy projects Acciona is set to construct the innovative new WtE plant in Western Australia, helping to reduce landfill while producing renewable energy.

A first of its kind in Australia, the $700 million project will be located in the Kwinana Industrial Area, 40 kilometres south of Perth. It will process up to 400,000 tonnes per year of waste using best practice technologies and processes, exporting an estimated 36 megawatts of electricity to the grid – enough to power around 50,000 households.

Acciona’s Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) contract with the project developer, a Macquarie Capital and Phoenix Energy Joint Venture, includes a 36-month construction period, which began in October 2018.

The project builds on Acciona’s long-term investment in Australia, and will involve a mix of domestic and international know-how. Te company has previously constructed several power generation plants overseas, including waste and domestic process and incinerating facilities, and is well-known for its EPC expertise.

Acciona Geotech’s managing director Bede Noonann says, “This is a landmark project for WA and our country as a whole. Waste to Energy is an underexploited technology in Australia, and it’s great to see Phoenix Energy, with the support of Macquarie Capital, developing the first large-scale plant there. We will bring the best of our local and global knowledge to the construction, and are working with some great partners who also have highly specialised skills.”

Acciona’s consortium to design, build, operate and maintain the facility includes operations and maintenance partner Veolia, a global leader in optimised resource management. CEO and MD of Veolia Australia and New Zealand Danny Conlon says, “This project is an exciting development for Veolia in Australia. Adding to Veolia’s existing infrastructure in NSW and QLD, where we generate enough electricity to power 35,000 homes per year from waste, the Kwinana Project is another example where we will extract value from waste materials, delivering a clean energy source. At a time when Australian businesses and households are seeing energy shortages and rising costs, Veolia is proud to be working with innovative partners to help deliver new, environmentally sustainable energy from waste.”

Image:  123RF’s Kitti Parthoom © 123RF  

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