Energy from waste management refers to converting waste materials such as solid, agricultural, and industrial waste into energy.
This energy can be in the form of electricity, heat or fuel.
The process involves different technologies such as incineration, gasification and pyrolysis.

According to the World Bank, waste generation rates are rising. In 2020, the world was estimated to generate 2.24 billion tonnes of solid waste, amounting to a footprint of 0.79 kilograms per person per day. With rapid population growth and urbanisation, annual waste generation is expected to increase by 73% from 2020 levels to 3.88 billion tonnes in 2050.

Energy from waste management is seen as a sustainable way to manage waste while generating energy. It reduces the amount of waste at landfills and provides alternative energy to fossil fuels. This energy is classified as renewable Energy.

The advantages are many such as:

  • Reduction in landfill waste which helps reduce the negative impact on the environment
  • Energy diversification as the energy from waste management provides an alternative source of energy to fossil fuels.
  • Job creation as a new industry that can generate jobs in operations, management and maintenance.

There are some adverse effects stemming from this technology, including air pollution and the high cost of implementation. Therefore it is important for facilities to have the proper certifications.

There have been significant investments in the last years from European companies like the French-based Veolia, which has invested over €1.7 billion in developing energy from waste and EDF. EDF converts waste into gas that can be used to generate electricity. These investments demonstrate the growing importance of sustainable waste practices.

A report from MarketsandMarkets suggests that the waste-to-energy market is expected to grow from US 423billion in 2021 to US 543billion by 2026, a CAGR of 5.1%, as government initiatives are increasing towards renewable energy sources driven by increased urbanisation and industrialisation.

In Greece, there is an imperative need for investment in waste management to improve the system. The Greek government passed a law that mandates separate waste collection by 2023, aiming to decrease the waste in landfills and increase recycling rates.

The New Management Waste Plan (NWMP) was introduced and instituted in September 2020 (Government Gazette 185/A/29-09-2020) with an implementation period between 2020 and 2030.

The new NWMP aims to adopt the appropriate strategic directions so that the national waste management policy is implemented through a coherent network of plans, programmes, actions and projects, and the established objectives are achieved.

Sirec Energy sees this as an opportunity to participate by investing in projects that aim to produce energy from waste and has identified specific projects looking to invest within this year.

Dionissis Alissandratos, Managing Director of Sirec Energy, commented:
“Investments in the production of Energy from waste are a significant part of our strategy with a vast opportunity for growth. Sirec Energy will support the Country’s efforts to minimize waste by investing in such projects.
We have exciting projects in the pipeline and will deploy the appropriate resources to implement our plans successfully”.

About Sirec Energy Capital Partners
Sirec Energy is an independent Private Equity Firm, managing the European Sustainable Investment Fund (EUSIF) with €70m assets under management and a focus on investing in environmental sustainability and energy efficiency projects.

Since its establishment in 2019, the team has managed projects of more than €400m in energy efficiency and renewable energy production across seven European countries.