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$15 Million Seed Fund to Build Capabilities in Waste Management

$15 Million Seed Fund to Build Capabilities in Waste Management This is a news release from NEA. Singapore, 5 June 2009 - A $15 million Environment Technology Research Programme (ETRP) has been launched by the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, as part of the Environment and Water Industry Development Council (EWI) and National Environment Agency (NEA)’s joint efforts to develop capabilities in waste management. The ETRP is an initiative to build up technological competencies in waste management and to support a growing ecosystem of companies and researchers undertaking Clean Environment Research and Development (R&D). It will provide funding support for Singapore-based companies, research institutes (RIs) and Institute of Higher Learning (IHLs) to develop, pilot and commercialise advanced technologies for waste management. Through ETRP, the Ministry hopes to catalyse and incubate indigenous, sustainable and cost-efficient waste management solutions that are not only applicable locally but can also be exported to other cities facing similar waste challenges. Administered by EWI and NEA, the $15 million research fund will be deployed over three years. Most of the research activities are required to be carried out in Singapore to facilitate knowledge sharing and technology transfer to Singapore environmental industry. EWI will call for the first Request-For-Proposal (RFP) in July 2009 and subsequently another one in January 2010. The RFP will be scheduled for twice a year, in January and July. The ETRP awards grants to R&D projects on a competitive basis in the field of waste management and will help boost entities that are involved in waste management research, specifically in the areas of energy recovery, material recovery and special waste treatment. Promising areas of research could range from ways to increase thermal efficiency of incineration processes, technologies to increase recyclable yield of high-value waste streams and methods to remediate old landfills rapidly and safely. To bridge the gap between upstream research and commercialization of the end-product, NEA will open up key facilities such as waste-to-energy plants and landfills to test-bed and validate the new technologies. This will provide opportunities for companies to test and adapt new solutions in Singapore before exporting them globally. Waste Management Market With increasing affluence and population growth, the sustainable and efficient management of waste has become a key challenge for land-scarce cities like Singapore. The waste management market worldwide is projected to grow from US$230 billion in 2005 to about US$320 billion in 2015 . A large part of this growth concentrated in developing economies where the volume of waste generated is growing exponentially. The Asian market for waste infrastructure and technology, which is expected to grow at an annual rate of 10-12%, is a growth area that Singapore can tap into. “The ETRP will support the Sustainable Singapore Blueprint by developing new capabilities to support our future economic and population growth in the area of clean environment. With our decades of successful experience in waste management, there is also growing interest in Singapore's approach to waste management. We hope to work with the industry to promote our capabilities overseas,” said Mr Andrew Tan, Senior Deputy Executive Director of EWI, MEWR and CEO, NEA.

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