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Govt ‘Yet To Respond’ To Plans For A Waste-To-Energy Plant

03282016_DumpFire13.1_t670 (1)Executives of Stellar Energy yesterday disclosed that the Christie administration has yet to respond to applications for a waste-to-energy plant proposed by the company, despite the plant’s capacity to alleviate the “vexing and hazardous” dump fires plaguing the New Providence Landfill.

During a press conference at the company’s Sandyport office on Wednesday, officials questioned the reasons for the government’s continued delay, citing that the company has been in talks with the Christie administration for several years about a plan for a large-scale plasma gasification waste-to-energy plant.

Stellar Energy has also claimed that it has received a letter from the Bahamas Investment Authority confirming receipt of its files with the intention of presenting the documents to the National Economic Council at its next meeting.

However, as the company stated, nearly six months have passed and neither of the organisations has met on the matter despite written assurances that documents submitted by Stellar Energy are “complete and needs no further explanation.”

The latest blaze occurred at the Harrold Road landfill late Sunday night, damaging some of Renew Bahamas’ waste management equipment. Renew Bahamas was contracted in 2014 to remediate the dumpsite.

In a statement released by Renew Bahamas yesterday, the company said it had fully extinguished the section of the fire at the rear of the Materials Recycling Facility, where some recyclable products were being stocked and loaded for export.

As a result, a significant amount of the smoke in the area had been reduced.

Renew Bahamas said its focus was now on the temporary tipping area where the fire started, with the intention of suppressing the levels of smoke emanating from that particular section.

Yesterday Stellar Energy Chief Operations Officer Jean-Paul Michielsen called for clarity on the scope of Renew’s contract with the government.

According to Mr Michielsen, Renew Bahamas has not mitigated the real problem.

“From what I know, we have a management company at the dumpsite right now; they’re called Renew Bahamas and they have been given a mandate two years ago to manage and secure that property. And, from what I can see, they are not really fulfilling that mandate,” said Mr Michielsen.

“Don’t tell me after two years you can’t secure that property from arsonists. That doesn’t make any sense to me. And we have reached out to Renew, we have never received an email back,” he added.

He maintained that Stellar Energy remains open to working with Renew Bahamas, the Department of Environmental Health Services or any other organisation willing to transform the New Providence Landfill into a modern property.

Recently, Renew Bahamas has placed emphasis on recyclable materials – cardboard, plastic bottles, paper – items the company then compresses and ships off to recycling plants around world.

Meanwhile, Stellar Energy wants to convert all forms of waste into pure electrical energy, through its proposed waste-to-energy plant.

Stellar Energy has indicated that its facility can work alongside Renew Bahamas’s recycling plant.

Mr Michielsen said his company has also applied to the government on many occasions over the last three years for the right to manage the landfill and start-up an operation built on the premise of waste-to energy.

Stellar Energy’s proposed waste-to-energy facility was at the centre of the letter of intent scandal that prompted Prime Minister Perry Christie to fire then Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Works Renward Wells.

Addressing the controversy, Mr Michielsen said while he understands the government’s decision to move away from the matter until the public has had the chance to better understand the specifics of the case, there remains no need for the government to rule out the possibility of such an operation “altogether.”


Category/ies:Articles, Bahamas Articles, Energy Efficiency, Waste to Energy, Waste to Energy.
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