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Problems & Solutions

Integrated Waste Management Facilities

 

 
Objective
The Integrated Waste Management Facilities (IWMF) aims to substantially reduce the bulk size of mixed MSW and to recover useful resources. It will minimize the landfilling of waste significantly, thereby extending the useable life of landfills and their extensions in Hong Kong. 
 
Video : 
 
Technology
The IWMF will be developed in phases. The IWMF Phase 1 will have a treatment capacity of 3,000 tonnes each day. It will adopt advanced incineration as the core treatment technology as well as a demonstration scale recycling plant for the recovery of recyclables from mixed MSW. 
 
 
 
Modern Incineration Technology - Process Flow Diagram
(Modern Incineration Technology - Process Flow Diagram,
 click here for Chinese video download or browse Chinese transcript only)
 

The IWMF will adopt state-of-the-art technologies and pollution control measures. It will comply with the most stringent international emission standards for the protection of public health and the environment. Advanced technologies are able to reduce pollutant emissions from incineration very significantly. For example in Germany, the amount of waste incinerated in year 2000 doubled that in 1990, but due to the adoption of advance control technologies, the dioxin emission was only one-thousandth of that in 1990. Overseas experience and studies have also demonstrated that advanced incineration plants that complied with stringent emission standards would not cause adverse health impacts. 
 
Benefits
Apart from avoiding the need to landfill more than 2,500 tonnes of waste each day and recovering nearly hundred tonnes of material (e.g. metals) each day, the IWMF Phase 1 would recover energy from the MSW which could be turned to electricity for supply to more than 100,000 households in Hong Kong, thereby reducing the use of fossil fuel for electricity generation. The IWMF Phase 1 would contribute positively to the reduction of Green House Gas emission in Hong Kong.
 
Advanced incineration facility nowadays could blend in with the surrounding local environment with attractive outlooks. The IWMF would be designed to have aesthetically pleasing architectural layouts. In addition, it would provide excellent opportunities for incorporation of environmental education, technology research and eco-touring provisions.
 
IWMF Phase 1 Site Selection
A comprehensive site selection exercise that aimed to determine potential sites for developing the IWMF Phase 1 was completed in January 2008. Two potential sites were identified, namely the Tsang Tsui Ash Lagoons sites in Tuen Mun and the Shek Kwu Chau site (to be reclaimed) to the south of Lantau Island. The IWMF Phase 1 will occupy an area of about 10 hectares.
   
   

Potential Sites for the Development of IWMF

 
   
 

Tsang Tsui Ash Lagoons site

 
   
   

Shek Kwu Chau site

 
   
Engineering Investigation and Environmental Impact Assessment Studies
In November 2008, the government commenced a detailed Engineering Investigation and Environmental Impact Assessment Studies (EI&EIA Studies) for these two sites to ascertain their overall suitability. The EIA Study was completed in 2011 while the EI Study is near completion. The EIA for IWMF Phase 1 was approved under the Environmental Impact Assessment Ordinance on 17th January 2012. The full approved EIA report is available at internet website (www.eia.hk).  Taking into account the EIA report results and Hong Kong’s overall waste management strategy as a whole, the Government has identified the artificial island near SKC as the preferred site for developing the first modern IWMF. Please refer to the Legislative Council Brief and the Environmental Affairs Panel Papers no.: 1. CB(1) 1369/11-12(01) and 2. CB(1) 1628/11-12(01) for more information.  We will pay close attention to each step of the preparation work and expedite all the necessary actions if possible so that the IWMF can be commissioned as early as possible. Meanwhile, we will continue to actively promote reduction, reuse and recycling of waste and eco-responsibility in order to reduce the amount of waste generated.

Brief finding of the EI&EIA Studies on technology review, waste transportation arrangement, and opportunities on energy utilisation, recycling products and community facilities are as follows: -
   
Technology Review
Having reviewed different thermal treatment technologies, the EI&EIA Studies propose that the moving grate incineration be adopted as the core technology for MSW treatment. The advantages of this technology are that : - 
 

 (a)

it has the best proven track record of application in large MSW treatment facilities (i.e. over 3,000 tonnes per day (tpd));

 (b)

it is the most robust thermal technology, capable of treating different sizes and qualities of mixed MSW;

 (c)

it possesses the least operational complexity; and

 (d)

it requires the least capital and operating costs. 


In December 2009, the Advisory Committee on the Environment (ACE) was consulted on the recommended moving grate incineration technology (ACE Paper, Annex A, Annex B and Minutes of Meeting, 14th Dec 2009 [ACE 22/2009] ). The ACE supported the recommended incineration technology and agreed that a sorting and recycling plant (S&R plant) with a treatment capacity of 200 tonnes per day should be incorporated in the IMWF to test the operational viability and cost effectiveness of recovering the recyclables from the MSW prior to the incineration process.

 

 
Waste Transportation
To minimize the potential environmental and traffic impact, the EI&EIA Studies recommended that waste will be delivered to the IWMF by sea. The MSW received at the existing West Kowloon Transfer Station, Island East Transfer Station and Island West Transfer Station would be compacted in tightly sealed containers and delivered to the IWMF by dedicated container vessels.
Waste ship
Waste container vessel
 

Waste Transportation Arrangement :

Waste Transportation TTL

 

Waste Transportation SKC

IWMF in Tsang Tsui Ash Lagoons site

 

IWMF in Shek Kwu Chau site

 
 
Opportunities
Energy Utilisation
The EI&EIA Studies estimated that the IWMF could export about 480 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity (amounts to about 1% of the total electricity consumption in Hong Kong) which will be sufficient for use by over 100,000 households and help reduce about 440,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas each year. The study proposes connection of the surplus electricity to the existing power grid in Hong Kong so as to fully utilize this energy for the benefits of the community and the environment.
 
Recycled Product
The EI&EIA Studies identifies that the major recycled products generated from the sorting plant of the IWMF would include metals and plastics. As for the incineration plant, metals would be the main recoverable material whilst the bottom ash might be reused for cement making or construction material subject to confirmation of their characteristics. 
 
 
Community Facilities
Some waste treatment facilities in overseas countries have incorporated social, recreational and educational facilities that are well received by the public. Considering the availability of surplus energy and the site characteristics, the EI&EIA Studies identify the following preliminary options that might be worthy of consideration: -
 

 (i)

Educational Centre cum Waste Technology Museum -

 

The facility could comprise exhibition hall, interactive game gallery, lecture theatre and round-the-site touring route via visitor corridor cum electric trolley;  

 

Education Centre_1

 

Education Centre_2

 

An educational display for introducing the operation of incinerator at the Shinkoto Incineration Plant, Tokyo
 
 
School children viewing the waste disposal facility models at the Waterfront Landfill at Tokyo Bay
 

 (ii)

Eco-tourism Park -

 

It could comprise greenhouse and botanic garden; an ecology centre displaying information on the local floral and faunal species and providing venues for environmental activities. An example of such is the Yumenoshima Tropical Greenhouse Dome in Japan which utilizes the heat energy from the adjacent Shinkoto Incineration Plant.

 

        Greenhouse Dome plant

 

Yumenoshima Tropical Greenhouse and tropical plants inside the greenhouse
 
 

   Public Participation

 

 

  Information Papers and Reports

 

 

 

 

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User review date: 
Wednesday, 1 June, 2016