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Global waste-to-energy systems about to ramp

Waste-to-energy plants, which take municipal solid waste and produce electricity and heat, are about to pick up globally with global revenue surging by 2012.

Waste-to-energy plants, which take municipal solid waste and produce electricity and heat, are about to pick up globally with global revenue surging by 2012.

According to Pike Research, the waste-to-energy (WTE) market will see global revenue increase from $3.7 billion in 2010 to $13.6 billion in 2016.

WTE systems address a few key issues notably landfill heaps that ultimately become environmental issues. Thermal WTE systems will still dominate with 93.2 percent of the market over the next six years. So-called biological systems will be 6.8 percent of the market.

There are more than 900 thermal WTE plans globally---most of them using combustion. In a nutshell, WTE plans incinerate trash to boil water and produce electricity via steam. These plants treat 200 million tons of municipal waste and produce 130 terawatts hours of electricity. Pike Research says that advanced thermal treatment technologies like plasma arc gasification and biological options---composting and anaerobic digestion---are also emerging.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com