Environmental and health performance of waste to energy technologies (Report 1468)

Advice of the Environmental Protection Authority to the Minister for Environment under Section 16(e) of the Environmental Protection Act 1986 (Report 1468)

On 16 November 2011, the Minister for Environment wrote to the Chair of the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) and the Chairman of the Waste Authority, requesting that the two Authorities investigate the environmental and health performance of waste to energy technologies internationally.

This request sought information on:

  • legislation for the establishment and operation of waste to energy facilities, focussed on emissions, in jurisdictions where these facilities currently exist;
  • current emissions from established and operating best practice facilities; and
  • current and historical level of compliance of these facilities.

The Minister requested that the information gathered be from full-scale, commercial plants that process municipal solid waste (MSW) and from a variety of technology types.

To assist with this investigation, WSP Environment and Energy Ltd were engaged to undertake a technical review of waste to energy plants around the world. These technical reports are attached. The reports provide detailed information to address the issues identified by the Minister for Environment. This advice from the EPA and Waste Authority draws on the technical advice to make recommendations that are relevant to the Western Australian situation.

April 4, 2013