MRW brings you markets, business and policy news from around the world.
Greenstar sale boosts WM Recycle goal
WM Recycle America, a subsidiary of Waste Management, has acquired recycling firm Greenstar.
Following the acquisition, Waste Management will have capacity to manage 13.5 million tonnes annually of recyclable materials for municipal, industrial, and commercial customers.
In 2012, Greenstar and its subsidiaries managed around 1.4 million tonnes of recycled material via 12 MRFs, including seven single-stream plants, and a brokerage business for recovered material.
WM Recycle America said the deal would help the company to reach its goal of managing 18 million tonnes of recyclable material by 2020.
PC refurb firm is sued by Microsoft
Computing giant Microsoft is suing a Phoenix e-waste recycling firm, claiming the company has been selling unauthorised copies of its software.
E-Waste Harvesters and its principal, Earl Campbell, have repeatedly advertised and sold refurbished computers that contain pirated copies of XP, the Windows operating system, said a complaint filed in the federal court.
E-Waste was warned in June by Microsoft that it should not sell computers with “infringing copies” of the computing giant’s software installed. E-Waste said its goal is to help the environment by reducing the amount of toxic computer waste that goes into landfills.
Seattle targets C&D and organic wastes
Seattle would prohibit homes and businesses from throwing away organic waste by 2016, according to an ambitious update to the city’s Solid Waste Management Plan. It would also prohibit all commercial construction and demolition debris from being landfilled by 2017.
The plan targets includes a 60% recycling rate by 2015, 70% by 2022, single-family organics collection in 2014 and a ban on businesses sending plastic film and clean wood to landfill.
Dutch police raid firm over illegal shipments
The Rotterdam location for Netherlands-based Peute Recycling has been raided by Dutch police in connection with alleged fraud and illegal waste shipments the firm made in 2011 and 2012.
In a statement, Recycling Peute has denied the charges made by the Netherlands’ Public Prosecutor.
The environmental team of the Rotterdam Police undertook a search of Peute over fraud and illegal transboundary shipments within Europe and to Asia made in 2011 and 2012.
The law enforcement agencies said that Peute had been suspected of shipping material contaminated with household waste.
Peute rebutted the charges saying it was “transparent at all levels”, that it had fully co-operated and that the accusations were “unfounded”.
PET bottle collection has ‘stagnated’
The collection of PET bottles is being limited by poor infrastructure and has stagnated at about 50%, said trade body European Plastics Recyclers (EuPR).
It said the remaining PET bottles not collected are either landfilled or incinerated.
Casper van den Dungen, chairman of the EuPR PET working group, said: “Europe is not maximising the sustainable use of a valuable resource such as post-consumer PET.”
The costs of recycling have also increased because of increasingly complex bottle design. PET recycling plants are operating at only 75% of capacity, added van den Dungen.
Danes extend cable partnership in Italy
Danish firm Eldan Recycling has installed a new cable granulation and separation plant at an existing customer facility in Italy.
The new plant is designed to process about four tonnes of mixed cables per hour. The system, valued at around e1m (£870,000), includes a multi purpose rasper, heavy granulator, a fine granulator, separation table and a classifier.
Faaborg-based Eldan said the individual machines can be adjusted for various types of dry cables such as hair-wire, harness-wire and communication wire. The output material, whether aluminium, copper and organic/insulation, can achieve a clean metal fraction of 99.5% or better.
German metal firm boosts management
German metal recycler TSR Recycling has expanded its management team. The firm has appointed Bernd Fleschenberg and Hermann Holstein as managing directors at its headquarters in Bottrop.
The former was previously managing director of region east at Remondis while the latter was a board member of Alba, representing its waste operations segment in Germany and Eastern Europe.
According to chief executive Edwin Leijnse, the new set-up will enable the company to develop quickly and durably - essential elements, he said, in achieving projected growth.
Recyled batteries form storage system
Toyota in Japan has developed an electricity storage and management system that uses recycled nickel-metal hydride batteries from hybrid vehicles.
The system, which weighs just under one tonne, is capable of storing 10kWh of electrical energy. The energy management system is intended to make it possible to control the consumption, storage and discharge of electricity, as well as increase usage efficiency.
Toyota said the system will be sold in combination with building energy management systems, solar carports, solar power generation, LED lighting, energy saving air conditioning and other such items.
Pakistan opts for oxo-bio plastics
The Pakistan government has announced that plastic bags and all other disposable plastic products made of polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP) or polystyrene (PS) must be made with oxo-biodegradable technology.
The legislation prohibits the manufacture of conventional and bio-based disposable PE, PP or PS products in Pakistan, but also prevents them being imported.
The United Arab Emirates legislated to require oxo-biodegradability of plastic carrier bags in January last year. Earlier this month its government extended the range of products to include almost all disposable plastic products made from PE, PP or PS.
Kenyan universities use UK expertise
Universities in Kenya will benefit from an exchange of knowledge from the Centre for Sustainable E-waste Management at Northampton University.
There will be joint research projects, exchanges and modules shared between the universities, including University of Nairobi, Bondo University College, Chepkoilel University College and Moi University.
John Sinclair, deputy dean of the University of Northampton, said it is a matter of concern that developing countries, being major importers of electronic and electrical equipment, do not have programmes for educating the populace on the management of e-waste.