New TuasOne plant takes over decommissioned Tuas Incineration Plant

TuasOne is Singapore's sixth waste-to-energy plant and is the most land-efficient plant to date. PHOTO: MITSUBISHI HEAVY INDUSTRIES

SINGAPORE - Tuas Incineration Plant has been decommissioned after 36 years of service, with a new TuasOne plant taking over its operations.

TuasOne is Singapore's sixth waste-to-energy plant and is the most land-efficient plant to date, taking up just 4.8 hectares of land - or about the size of six football fields - said the National Environment Agency in a release on Wednesday (July 27).

Located at Tuas Avenue 3, the plant is equipped to incinerate 3,600 tonnes of waste and generate 120 megawatts of electricity daily, sufficient to power about 240,000 four-room Housing Board flats.

The plant has been operational since last December and has steadily increased its operating capacity since, said NEA.

In comparison, the now decommissioned Tuas Incineration Plant in Tuas Avenue 20 was built on 6.3 hectares of reclaimed land at an estimated cost of $200 million.

The plant ceased operations in February this year.

Since it started operations in 1986, Tuas Incineration Plant has treated approximately 18 million tonnes of general waste.

The heat recovered from the waste incineration process was used to generate approximately 6,400,000 megawatt-hours of electricity - the equivalent amount of electricity to power about 40,000 four-room HDB flats - over its 36 years of operations, said NEA.

Last September, a fatal accident at the plant killed two people.

NEA said it will explore the possibility of repurposing parts of the decommissioned plant's infrastructure for other waste management activities.

The new TuasOne will be in service for at least 25 years to help Singapore meet its long-term waste management needs while recovering energy from waste.

It is designed with higher heat recovery from waste incineration and higher electrical power generation efficiency, said NEA.

Incineration helps to reduce the volume of waste to ash by up to 90 per cent. The ash is transported to Tuas Marine Transfer Station for disposal at Semakau Landfill daily.

In 2019, TuasOne was one of the projects caught up in the embattled water treatment company Hyflux saga.

The plant is now operated by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Environmental & Chemical Engineering ECO Creation Singapore.

On Wednesday, former general managers (GM) of Tuas Incineration Plant paid tributes to the now-decommissioned plant.

Mr Pang Fook Chong, who served as the GM from 2014 to 2018, recalled the years between 1986 and 1995 when he started his career as a young engineer.

"I remember that Tuas Incineration Plant was sited on a piece of reclaimed land near the sea and was rather inaccessible as it took me more than an hour to report to work by bus. Now the Tuas area is well developed and accessible by MRT," he said.

Immediate past GM Ng Wah Yong, who served from 2018 to 2022, said he and his staff had one key goal in mind during his tenure.

"(It) was to work together to ensure that the plant continued to operate efficiently to meet Singapore's solid waste management needs until the day it was decommissioned," he added.

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