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17 January 2008

Hot topic

Burning HFC-23 will cut the equivalent of 4 million tonnes of CO2 per year.


That global warming might be slowed by an incinerator seems paradoxical. But fuel for a new furnace in Jinan, China, will be the greenhouse gas HFC-23. Weight for weight, this hydrofluorocarbon is 11,700 times more potent than CO2.

A chemicals facility in Jinan was venting approximately 360 tonnes of HFC-23 to the atmosphere annually. The incineration plant will effectively convert the HFC-23 to carbon dioxide and reduce its potency by the equivalent of 4 million tonnes of CO2 in the process.

Mott MacDonald developed the incinerator’s design, co-ordinated the local approvals process, oversaw contractor selection, carried out detailed design, obtained approvals, supervised construction and registered the project. The scheme, known as Project Polar, was completed in ten months, six months ahead of schedule.

Project Polar has been built under the Clean Development Mechanism of the Kyoto Protocol. Client is investment bank Climate Change Capital.
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