The New Horizons Energy Waste –to- energy plant, to be launched in Athlone by Western Cape Premier Helen Zille and Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille, will manufacture bio-methane and carbon dioxide by the middle of the year.
It is anticipated to generate 80 full-time jobs and numerous hundred indirectly, and will guzzle 500t of waste daily – approximately 10% of Cape Town’s total.
All the compressed gas produced by the bio-technology start-up will be vended to Afrox. The bio-methane will be sold as an alternative to LPG and diesel, and the carbon dioxide will be used in agriculture, industries and waste-water treatment.
“We have been working on this for years. It’s a dream come true,” New Horizons CEO Egmond Ottermann told Engineering News.
“We hope to have the whole thing completely commissioned by May.
“There’s immense potential for manufacturing products such as plastic bricks and roof tiles. We look forward to many more little industries to be set up close to the plant so that we can drive zero waste to landfill.”
Organic waste for the digester will come from the City of Cape Town, shops, food makers’ restaurants bakeries, and breweries.
Afrox marketing manager Heinrich Uytenbogaardt said compressed natural gas was extensively used globally.
“This is still a moderately unused market in South Africa and in Cape Town in particular, but one can look ahead to growth,” he said.
“The upgraded bio-methane from the New Horizons plant is cleaner burning, with far less production of sulphur and nitrogen by-products, and it will have a far more dependable quality.”
The Industrial Development Corporation funded 60% of the plant.
“It can facilitate in replacing importation of fuels by taking the waste and making gas from it.
“Most significant, it’s generating jobs.
“We also think that there is immense prospects for replication [of this project] all over South Africa and Africa,” the IDC’s Raoul Goosen