Trash to Hryvnias: The economics of electricity generation from landfill gas in Ukraine

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Utilization of landfill gas for electricity generation should be an attractive option for Ukraine in light of the country’s rapidly growing municipal solid waste problem, the influx of intermittent renewable electricity into the national grid, and renewable energy adoption commitments. However, the deployment of landfill gas power plants has been slow vis-à-vis other alternative energy technologies despite the existing government incentives. This article aims to help understanding this trend by investigating the economic feasibility of landfill gas power plants. The research focuses on determining the Levelized Cost of Electricity of these electricity generation facilities and comparing it to the feed-in tariff available to landfill gas electricity producers. The results show making an investment into a landfill gas-fired power plant is an appealing strategy due to a potential high and quick return on investment in 5.1 years. This leads to the ultimate conclusion that economic feasibility is not a cause for the slow adoption of landfill gas as a source of renewable electricity generation in Ukraine. In addition, the article identifies several potential barriers to landfill gas electricity generation deployment to be investigated in future research.

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International Journal of Sustainable Energy Planning and Management