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Issues and options in waste management: A social cost–benefit analysis of waste-to-energy in the UK


Jamasb, T and Nepal, R, Issues and options in waste management: A social cost-benefit analysis of waste-to-energy in the UK, Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 54, (12) pp. 1341-1352. ISSN 0921-3449 (2010) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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DOI: doi:10.1016/j.resconrec.2010.05.004


The growing stream of municipal solid waste (MSW) requires a sustainable waste management strategy. At the same time, addressing climate change and security of energy supply concerns requires increased use of low-carbon and domestic sources of energy. This paper assesses the economic and environmental aspects of waste management options focusing on waste-to-energy (WtE) as a renewable resource. We discuss how WtE and recycling are compatible as waste treatment options. The paper then presents a social cost–benefit analysis of selected waste management scenarios for the UK focusing on specific waste management targets and carbon prices and compares them with coal-fired electricity. The results indicate that meeting the waste management targets of the EU Directive are socially more cost-effective than the current practice. The cost-effectiveness improves substantially with higher carbon prices. The findings show that WtE can be an important part of both waste management strategy and renewable energy policy although achieving the full potential of WtE requires development of heat delivery networks.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:renewable energy, costs, benefits, waste-to-energy
Research Division:Economics
Research Group:Applied economics
Research Field:Environment and resource economics
Objective Division:Energy
Objective Group:Renewable energy
Objective Field:Renewable energy not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Nepal, R (Dr Rabindra Nepal)
ID Code:129892
Year Published:2010
Web of Science® Times Cited:85
Deposited By:TSBE
Deposited On:2018-12-20
Last Modified:2019-01-21

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