Frontiers of Chemical Science and Engineering

, Volume 12, Issue 4, pp 815–831 | Cite as

Greenhouse gas emissions from thermal treatment of non-recyclable municipal waste

  • Tomáš Ferdan
  • Martin PavlasEmail author
  • Vlastimír Nevrlý
  • Radovan Šomplák
  • Petr Stehlík
Views & Comments


This paper analyses factors affecting the production of greenhouse gases from the treatment of residual municipal waste. The analysis is conducted so that the environmentally-friendly decision-making criteria may be later implemented into an optimisation task, which allocates waste treatment capacities. A simplified method of life cycle assessment is applied to describe environmental impact of the allocation. Global warming potential (GWP) is employed as a unit to quantify greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions. The objective is to identify the environmental burdens and credits measured by GWP for the three fundamental methods for treatment of residual waste unsuitable for material recovery. The three methods are waste-to-energy (WTE), landfilling and mechanicalbiological treatment (MBT) with subsequent utilization of refuse-derived fuel. The composition of the waste itself and content of fossil-derived carbon and biogenic carbon are important parameters to identify amounts of GHG. In case of WTE, subsequent use of the energy, e.g., in district heating systems in case of heat, is another important parameter to be considered. GWP function dependant on WTE capacity is introduced. The conclusion of this paper provides an assessment of the potential benefits of the results in optimisation tasks for the planning of overall strategy in waste management.


waste management greenhouse gases global warming potential allocation planning waste-to-energy 


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The financial support from the project “Sustainable Process Integration Laboratory—SPIL,” project No. CZ.02.1.01/0.0/0.0/ 15_003/0000456 funded by EU “CZ Operational Programme Research and Development, Education,” Priority 1: Strengthening capacity for quality research has been acknowledged.

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Greenhouse gas emissions from thermal treatment of non-recyclable municipal waste


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Copyright information

© Higher Education Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tomáš Ferdan
    • 1
  • Martin Pavlas
    • 2
    Email author
  • Vlastimír Nevrlý
    • 1
  • Radovan Šomplák
    • 2
  • Petr Stehlík
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Process Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical EngineeringBrno University of TechnologyBrnoCzech Republic
  2. 2.Sustainable Process Integration Laboratory – SPIL, NETME Centre, Faculty of Mechanical EngineeringBrno University of TechnologyBrnoCzech Republic

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