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Waste-to-Energy (WtE) Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2021 - 2026)

Waste-to-Energy (WtE) Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2021 - 2026)

  • December 2021
  • 238 pages
  • ID: 6192762
  • Format: PDF
  • Mordor Intelligence LLP

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The waste-to-energy (WtE) market is expected to register a CAGR of 7.35% during the forecast period of 2021 – 2026, reaching a market size of USD 69.94 billion by 2026, up from USD 43.66 billion in 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic affected the market negatively in the form of supply chain disruptions and delays in project implementation. However, the market is expected to recover from 2021, owing to the increasing efforts to promote waste-to-energy plants by various countries across the world. In addition to this, an increasing amount of waste generation and growing concern for waste management to meet the need for sustainable urban living, and increasing focus on non-fossil fuel sources of energy are driving the demand for the waste-to-energy market. The market growth is expected to be restrained by the expensive nature of incinerators, particularly as energy prices decline and several plants are unable to cover operating costs. Furthermore, several European and Asia-Pacific countries are planning to focus more on recycling, which saves three to five times more energy, thus, restraining the waste-to-energy market.

Key Highlights
Thermal technology is expected to dominate the waste-to-energy market in the coming years, owing to the increasing development in incineration and gasification technologies, as well as the increasing amount of waste generated, especially from the emerging economies of Asia-Pacific.
Emerging waste-to-energy technologies, such as Dendro Liquid Energy (DLE), which is four times more efficient in terms of electricity generation, with additional benefits of no emission discharge and effluence problems at plant sites, are expected to create significant opportunities for the market players, over the coming years.
Asia-Pacific dominated the market across the world, with the majority of demand coming from the countries such as China, India, and Japan.

Key Market Trends

Growing Demand for Thermal-Based Waste-to-Energy Conversion

Thermal technology is expected to account for the highest market share in the global waste-to-energy market during the forecast period, owing to the increasing development of waste incineration facilities across the world.
It is estimated that plants, which utilize cogeneration of thermal power (heating and cooling), together with electricity generation, can reach optimum efficiencies of 80%.
In the present scenario, incineration is the most well-known waste-to-energy technology for municipal solid waste (MSW) processing. However, waste-to-energy technologies, particularly incineration, produce pollution and carry potential health safety risks. In order to reduce particulate and gas-phase emissions, incineration plant owners have adopted a series of process units for cleaning the flue gas stream, which has, in turn, led to a significant improvement in terms of environmental sustainability.
The thermal-based waste-to-energy conversion is expected to lead the market, particularly in the growing economies of Asia-Pacific, where the rising urban population is expected to be the key contributing factor for increasing municipal solid waste (MSW).
Other factors, such as industrialization and economic development, would also contribute toward MSW generation, which is further expected to influence the growth of the thermal-based waste-to-energy market.

Asia-Pacific to Dominate the Market

Asia-Pacific has witnessed significant development in the waste-to-energy industry in the past few years. It has dominated the market across the world with increasing efforts taken by the government in adopting better MSW management practices, providing incentives for waste-to-energy projects in the form of capital subsidies and feed-in tariffs, and providing financial support for R&D projects on a cost-sharing basis.
Due to economic development and rapid urbanization in China, the generation of municipal solid waste (MSW) has been increasing rapidly. Therefore, the effective disposal of municipal solid waste has become a serious environmental challenge in China.
In December 2020, the Karnataka government laid the foundation for a waste-to-energy (WtE) plant at Bidadi, which is being developed by Karnataka Power Corporation Ltd (KPCL). The plant is expected to be operational by the end of 2022 and is set to be the first WtE plant in the state.
Japan has been one of the leading markets for waste-to-energy in Asia-Pacific. The country’s waste-to-energy market is driven by efficient solid waste management and financial support for waste-to-energy projects from both national and local governments. Moreover, to preserve the environment, the country is expected to introduce waste management and recycling technologies, which effectively turn waste into resources or appropriately disposes of it.
Therefore, factors such as the increasing amount of waste generated and the efforts taken by various governments to tackle this situation are expected to boost the demand for waste-to-energy plants in the coming years.

Competitive Landscape

The global waste-to-energy (WtE) market is fragmented. Some of the major players operating in this market include Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd, Waste Management Inc., A2A SpA, Veolia Environnement SA, and Hitachi Zosen Corp.

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