WTE incinerators to go on, construction under build and operate scheme

BOT scheme will save govt millions as construction will be borne by private sector


The government is identifying sites to build at least one waste-to-energy (WTE) incinerator in every state within the next two years and the construction contract of the facilities will be done through open tenders.

Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin (picture) said each WTE plant’s land plot will take into account the capacity and characteristics of solid waste and the distance between waste collection locations and the facility.

Zuraida said the government has received offers from private companies to construct the WTE plants, but the final decision will be made after the sites have been identified.

“Companies who would like to venture into the construction and management of the plants must first put in their capital under the build, operate and transfer (BOT) scheme.

“Many companies have shown their interests and we will grant the contracts via open tender.

“Once we have identified the locations, we will open the tender and companies with the best offers will operate these plants,” she told the Dewan Rakyat yesterday.

The minister was responding to a question by MP Chan Foong Hin (Pakatan Harapan-Kota Kinabalu) who asked about the ministry’s plan on solid waste management under the “One State One Incinerator” module.

Zuraida said despite the initial plan of one incinerator for each state, states such as Johor and Perak will require more than one.

“At the moment, the plan is to have one in every state over the next two years.

“But I understand that some states like Johor and Perak will need more — perhaps one in the north and another in the south. We are looking at that as well,” she said.

The construction of these incinerators is expected to take between 18 months and two years.

Contractors under the BOT scheme will generate income from the sale of electricity and gas to cover the construction cost of the WTE plants.

The incinerators will use the waste to produce electrical energy and gas.

Presently, only Negri Sembilan is building its own incinerator and will be the first state to start a new solid waste disposal system in two years.

Based on government statistics, Malaysia generated 42,672 tonnes of waste daily last year. The figure is expected to rise to 44,888 tonnes per day as the population increases, especially in cities.

Malaysia is already saddled with waste management problems as more landfill sites are required to cope with the rising waste.

The public had objected to the idea of the construction of incinerators, citing health and environmental concerns.

The BOT scheme will save the government millions as the WTE incinerators’ construction will be borne by the private sector.