Be’ah weighs Waste-to-Energy plan for Salalah petchem plant

Muscat, Jan 6 – Oman Environmental Services Holding Company (be’ah) — the Sultanate’s solid waste management flagship — says it is studying the viability of a Waste-to-Energy (WTE) scheme to support the energy needs of a petrochemical project in operation in Salalah in Dhofar Governorate.
The initiative is the latest addition to an ambitious portfolio of Energy-from-Waste (EfW) schemes that be’ah is currently evaluating as part of its goal to harness the energy potential of solid municipal and other waste being generated around the Sultanate. Success in the delivery of these projects is key to be’ah longer-term strategy to divert as much as 80 per cent of solid waste away from landfills into recycling and waste-to-energy initiatives by the year 2030.
According to be’ah’s Business Development Head, Fahad al Kharousi, the study centres on a plan for a roughly 130 – 140 MW capacity waste-to-energy facility based on combustion technology. Feedstock for the plant is envisioned in the form of Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF) processed from solid waste. Fuel demand is estimated at 600 – 1000 tonnes per annum.
Heat from the proposed WTE scheme will supplement the petrochemical plant’s requirement of high pressure steam for boiler operations, which it currently generates by burning natural gas. “Thus, instead of burning gas for the boiler, we will feed them with steam coming from the WTE facility,” said Al Kharousi. He declined to name the petrochemical plant in question, citing non-disclosure commitments in place.
While the initiative is still in its preliminary stage, both sides have agreed to discuss the idea of floating a joint feasibility study in the first quarter of this year, the official noted.
Be’ah’s signature Waste-to-Energy scheme is planned for implementation at Barka in South Al Batinah Governorate. Oman Power and Water Procurement Company (OPWP) — the single buyer of electricity under the Sector Law — has proposed a 50 MW capacity, grid-connected plant, although be’ah estimates a capacity of up to 130 – 140 MW.
Additionally, the state-owned entity has signed an agreement to supply shredded automotive tyres as an alternative fuel resource for the kiln operations of Oman Cement Company. Besides, it is in discussion with Petroleum Development Oman (PDO), the Sultanate’s largest oil and gas producer, to provide refuse derived fuel (RDF) for steam generation in support of its Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) operations.