The refuse-derived fuel market was valued at ~US$ 2 Bn in 2018. The refuse-derived fuel industry was in a slump during 2014 to 2018, tugged by the underexploited potential of energy from waste (EFW) technologies.
Growth of the refuse-derived fuel market marked a slight uptick, and status-quo is likely to endure, as new waste management solutions are emphasized abreast increasing municipal solid waste (MSW), reducing pressure on landfills.
Use of refuse-derived fuel for co-processing in cement kilns accounts for ~50% market shares, helping the cement industry reduce its carbon footprint and save on energy consumption.
Europe remains the frontrunner in the refuse-derived fuel landscape, owing to the presence of extensive co-processing plants, complemented by internal trade of refuse-derived fuel.
The refuse-derived fuel market in Asia-Pacific excluding Japan (APEJ) is likely to record a relatively faster growth through 2029, as EFW gradually becomes an important source of bioenergy in the region.
Opportunities are plenty in the refuse-derived fuel market, and key stakeholders are vying to leverage these via organic expansion strategies in developed markets and digitization of systems for greater performance. The future objectives of economies worldwide is clear – chemicals from waste or waste to molecule – and the refuse-derived fuel manufacturers are focusing on refurbishment or replacement of their existing systems, moving to new technologies in a planned & phased manner.
Stakeholders in the refuse-derived fuel market are focusing on consolidating their position in Europe, owing to the favorable legislations and technological vigor of the region. Governments in Europe are on their mark to leverage the potential of refuse-derived fuel in reducing the environmental impact, during waste conversion and the life-cycle of products consumed. Developing markets such as in APEJ, show promising growth opportunities for companies in the refuse-derived fuel market, as favorable policies continue to spur the capacity deployments in the region.
The refuse-derived fuel landscape is witnessing a paradigm inclination of companies toward strategies such as collaborations, joint ventures, and business expansion, to increase involvement across myriad segments of value chain. Fact.MR’s study opines that long-term stakeholder investment in established markets will translate to measurable returns, however the success rate will remain slow. On the contrary, long-term investment in developing markets will translate to average returns, while the success rate remains high.
What are Key Growth Influencers of the Refuse-Derived Fuel Market?
Governments, in collaboration with local companies, are offering advanced technologies for production of the refuse-derived fuel, even as carrying out robust waste management programs. Incentive-based programs that consider household waste separation, and construction of modern anaerobic digestion facilities, in line with growing number of waste collection & treatment programs will significantly influence the production and supply of refuse-derived fuel.
New waste management solutions are coming to the fore, alongside rising MSW production in several economies. This has further spurred the number of EFW facilities as a potential solution to abate and manage MSW production. Governments across the globe are promoting reinforcement of source-segregation infrastructure for continuous supply of refuse-derived fuel with suitable moisture and energy content.
The price volatility of crude oil has been sending ripples of concerns to governments globally, which in turn has led adoption of effective alternative to overcome the dependency on crude oil to as much extent as possible. Refuse-derived fuel has emerged as a feasible solution, as governments can efficiently manage solid waste within the nation and produce sufficient fuel, creating pathways to sustainability as a consequence.
There has been a marked rise in the emphasis on improving output of refuse-derived fuel plants, with efforts toward accurate separation of wastes. Governments are also providing incentives under contracts for refuse-derived fuel plant setup to regional players.
Untapped opportunities exist for companies in the refuse-derived fuel market, in countries such as Indonesia, Thailand, and Bangladesh, where focus on refuse-derive fuel plant establishments continues to grow robust. Favorable environment in these countries, with solid waste management programs and steady adoption of production technologies, will bode well for stakeholders in the refuse-derived fuel market.
What are Key Challenges Faced by Refuse-Derived Fuel Manufacturers?
Restrictions and duties imposed on refused-derived fuel imports, and standards and regulations based on grade continue to remain key barriers for the market stakeholders to address.
Bottlenecks remain in the financing and funding of the refuse-derived fuel projects, abreast the consolidation on the demand side. This, coupled with effective alternatives ensued from technological developments in the EFW landscape, will continue to challenge growth of companies in the refuse-derived fuel market.
Lack of awareness and facilities related to the production of the refuse-derived fuel, and growing pressure from the European countries for quality refuse-derived fuel also remain key concerns for the market players.
Greater Opportune Potential of Cement Kilns is Here to Stay
Cement kilns remain the most lucrative application of refuse-derived fuel, as these fuel are capable of powering various drying technologies being incorporated in the cement industries. Refuse-derived fuel complements the aspects that influence sustainability of the co-processing of waste, even as resolving the radical issues and challenges. This further enables effective utilization of energy and material value of wastes, in turn conserving natural resources via reducing the use of virgin materials. The study finds that, sales of refuse-derived fuel for use in cement kiln account for ~60% market shares. Gains from sales of refuse-derived fuel for use in co-combustion process will also remain significant, accounting for one-fourth market shares.
The insights and forecast of the refuse-derived fuel market offered in this study are backed a robust research methodology. Comprehensive primary interviews and secondary researches are involves in this research approach to gain bleeding-edge intelligence on the refuse-derived fuel market. Insights gained from the primary interviews are used to validate intelligence gained from the secondary sources. This report acts as a diligent source of information for businesses in the refuse-derived fuel market to make factual and triumphant strategies.
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