Waste is Cool! How 'First Mile' Waste Solutions can Cool the Smart Cities of the Future
The need for cooling grows dramatically with rising prosperity and global temperatures. But what does that have to do with waste? 70% of the world’s waste today is dumped or landfilled without energy recovery. 2 billion tons of waste ‘wasted’ every year by 2030 correspond to 800GW of solar PV capacity (500GW installed globally today). Done right, waste is one of few ‘fuels’ produced everywhere, and perhaps surprisingly, very suitable for the production of sustainable cooling. The next generation of efficient small-scale solutions can convert local mixed waste into clean power, heat or greenhouse-gas-free thermal cooling for direct local use. Zero-waste, no toxic ash residues. ‘First mile’ also means cutting transportation 70-90%. And less waste leaking into rivers and oceans. Doing this much better, cleaner, and cheaper, sustainable thermal cooling is ‘unlocked’ for large emerging markets and cities regardless of prosperity level.