Waste, a resource

Mette Crisp

Student thesis: Master thesis


The results found from this study support a market institutional perspective and a balance between regulations and market for the waste-to-energy market. No common definition exists internationally for waste, but the EU definition gives a common framework for the region. The amount of waste produced in the EU is growing. Different methods for disposal are used in the different countries but municipal solid waste is considered as part of the public utility sector. Within the EU waste framework, Waste-to-energy is defined according to the waste-hierarchy. Waste-to-­energy could be considered a renewable energy source depending on the contents of the incinerated waste. To determine its sustainability it should be considered what other energy sources it replaces. The economic activity of the EU has been hit hard by the economical crisis starting in 2008. Common policies are implemented to improve the environment and encourage growth, as part of the EU’s 2020 strategy. The EU is pluralistic in nature and the regionalisation gives businesses a layered regulative framework to adhere to. Neither of the two compared countries, the UK and Denmark, shows a transformative capacity. Each has their strengths and weaknesses. The paper found regionalisation to have a valid regulative purpose when dealing with trans-­boundary issues like environment and pollution, being complementary to the state-­nation. The paper found that the fear for import of waste is unfounded, as the total environmental cost has to be taken into consideration. Denmark has a comparative advantage in waste-to-­energy by incineration. It would be beneficial to pursue this advantage, as it would give possibility of providing cheaper energy and heating, lead to total environmental benefits for the EU, strenghen Denmarks position within waste-mangement and waste-­to-­energy and generate new possibilities for research, education and job possibilities strengthening the long-­term business possibilities for the Danish waste-­to-­energy sector.

EducationsMSc in International Business, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2012
Number of pages81