This article first appeared in The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on July 15, 2019 - July 21, 2019.
AS the saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. This could not be more apt for Tex Cycle Technology (M) Bhd as the ACE Market-listed homegrown scheduled waste recycling company ventures beyond local shores to the UK.
The company will undertake a renewable electrical energy plant (REEP) project in the UK via a partnership with local firm Culzean Generation Ltd, which is involved in research and development of small-scale combined heat and power systems utilising non-recyclable waste as feedstock.
Given the recent uproar over Malaysia becoming a dumping ground for plastic waste from developed countries, Tex Cycle CEO Gary Dass believes the company can do its part in resolving the issue, by tackling it at its source.
“It (the plastic pollution issue) gives us a good opportunity to set up an RE plant in the UK. The next country could be Australia, the US, Canada or Europe. We are keeping a lookout in these countries. We believe we can stop it before the waste comes here. We have a solution for them,” he tells The Edge in an interview. Dass points out that the waste coming into Malaysia is not entirely plastic but a mixture of plastic and other waste.
“Not all plastics can be recycled, but all plastics can be used to generate power. We can use them as feedstock for the proposed power plant. This is one of the reasons why we are in the UK,” he says. Tex Cycle collects soiled rags, cotton fabrics, rubber, gloves, activated carbon and wood from the oil and gas, electrical and electronics, automotive, printing and other manufacturing industries. Its non-recyclable but naturally biodegradable waste, once decontaminated at its state-of-the-art scheduled waste management plant in Telok Gong, Klang, Selangor, is turned into fuel pellets that may be consumed as a renewable energy fuel.
Two projects in the UK
According to Dass, the next big thing for Tex Cycle is its first 2mw REEP project in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, north-west England, followed by another in Burnley, Lancashire.
The group has formed a 50:50 joint-venture (JV) company called Culzean W2E Ltd with Culzean Generation for this purpose.
“We aim to prolong landfill life in the UK with our expertise in biomass gasification REEP to generate power from waste. Together, we hope to provide eco-friendly energy [that is] cheaper than [that using] fossil fuels,” says Dass.
Tex Cycle chief financial officer Geraldine Hii Siaw Wei is confident the REEP projects in the UK will be accretive to the group’s earnings within three years.
“The market potential in the UK is tremendous. The number of potential customers is simply mind-boggling. We foresee that one fine day, Tex Cycle will become a household name in the UK,” she says. Hii, who is also a director at Culzean W2E, highlights that Tex Cycle will focus on providing gasification technology and know-how while Culzean Generation will be handling marketing.
“Culzean Generation has experience in selling power throughout the UK. It knows the market there very well. It has good connections and will be sourcing the potential sites for us. It can even help us with networking and financing,” she notes.
She adds that Tex Cycle has been mulling over plans to venture into other countries in Southeast Asia, but the UK opportunity emerged first. “We knew we just could not afford to miss this opportunity. Imagine, the developed countries will be using Malaysian technology to generate electricity. That is something that we all can be proud of.”
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