A modern incinerator that can produce electricity by assimilating recycled waste should be seen as a boon for the society. However, numerous arguments are presented in favor as well as in opposition of setting up of such an incinerator. It is for us to decide and align our priorities with the lawmakers.
Arguments in favor
The energy producing capacity of a contemporary incinerator is far more compared to its predecessors. The amount of greenhouse gases, spelling danger for the thinning ozone layer, emanated by the incinerator is comparatively less than that of the landfills. Such incinerators materialize the vision of zero waste through adequate garbage reduction, reusing and recycling. The bulk of the garbage that would be burnt for generating energy would constitute of non-biodegradable plastics, which are proven to contaminate the soil, reduce the soil’s pH value and render the underground water sources toxic upon accumulation. Garbage generated in coming decades would be sufficient to fuel such waste-from-energy plants despite lessening of calorific value of waste during recycling. With scarcity of space for landfills, such initiatives prove to be advantageous for the society even if they can generate even a smidgen of energy
Environmentalists opine that toxic dioxins are produced by such energy generating plants. Further, in order to keep the plant’s operation in momentum, one needs to ensure consistent supply of waste. In the absence of this, the plant would be rendered ineffective and critical processes may suffer due to lack of power supply. The plastics and organic wastes would be subjected to recycling before being sent to the plant. This will adversely compromise the energy generating capability of the plant. Thus, the plant is not economically viable. The initial capital and later disposal costs are gargantuan.
With the aforesaid arguments in perspective, we incinerator manufacturers in kerala need to exercise our discretion to embrace the most viable waste management solution for the future.