MRW’s weekly look at news from around the world
Norway household recycling rates slip
The amount of household waste recycled or reused in Norway in 2011 was 40% of the total amount collected. This is a smaller share than in 2008, when 44% was recovered. In total, 2.2million tonnes of household waste were collected in 2011, and around half of this was sorted and sent to recovery plants. New figures show that overall amount of household waste increased by 4.5% from 2010 to 2011.
Italian PP and PE sellers bullish
Following sharp decreases in monthly contracts for polyethylene (PP) and polypropylene (PE) in Europe, sellers in Italy have had to accept sizeable price decreases in the PP and PE markets. Even so, many sellers were voicing bullish expectations for the near term, arguing that the bottom had been reached in the PP and PE markets.
German end-of-life vehicles on target
Germany has again met targets set out in the EU Directive on end-of-life vehicles (ELV). With a recycling backlog of vehicles turned in during a government-sponsored scrapping bonus scheme in 2009, the recovery rate for ELV stood at over 100%. Once the vehicles put into temporary storage have been processed, recovery rates were expected to normalise.
Packaging body shows off website
Pro Europe, the European umbrella organisation for packaging and packaging waste recovery and recycling schemes, has launched a new website. Joachim Quoden, managing director of Pro Europe, said: “With this new website, we can showcase our practical experience and knowledge on waste prevention in the packaging field, which spans over 15 years. I hope and believe that our website will be of interest and use for all stakeholders”.
recyclingportal.eu, 9 July
Food dominates Vancouver waste
The published results of a study into waste in Metro Vancouver in 2011 confirm that discarded food accounts for the largest percentage of the region’s municipal waste as a ban on the disposal of organics in 2015 looms. The study, published by Metro Vancouver - a political body which comprises 22 municipalities - indicated that discarded food accounted for 39% of waste from multi-family households. Waste from commercial businesses - a category that includes supermarkets and restaurants - contained 21% wasted food, according to the study.
Novelis sets up global R&D centre in Atlanta
Novelis, the world’s leading producer of rolled aluminum and largest recycler of aluminum beverage cans, has opened a new Global Research &Technology Centre near Atlanta.
The 160,000-square-foot facility serves as the global hub of the company’s extensive research and development activities. Novelis’ chief technical officer Jack Clark saidinnovation was the foundation of the company’s strategy. “It’s one of the key components of achieving our commitment to having 80% recycled content across our products by the year 2020,” he said. “This new centre will help drive increased collaboration with our customers, enabling us to work side-by-side in developing innovative, sustainable aluminum products.”
Nationwide schem targets USbatteries
Panasonic, Duracell (Procter & Gamble), Energizer and Rayovac have announced a joint nationwide commitment to the recycling of household batteries. Under the umbrella of the Corporation for Batter Recycling, the companies and other stakeholder groups envision an industry-led voluntary programme that changes how American consumers dispose of household batteries. Some retailers such as IKEA have recycling programmes but the. Department of Transportation regulations requiring batteries to be wrapped in individual plastic bags or taped at both ends hampered their proper disposal. Some local authorities accept batteries into their recycling waste streams, but many do not.
Canadian pulp mill to close as market bites
Tembec announced the indefinite closure of its high-yield pulp mill located in Chetwynd, British Columbia from 16 September. A total of 115 people work at the mill. Chris Black, Tembec executive vice president, said: “The high-yield pulp market has continued to soften over the past year. At today’s price levels, it is virtually impossible to maintain viable operations given the current cost structure of the Chetwynd mill. This is a difficult decision that we have not taken lightly since it has an impact on employees and on the region. We will continue to monitor the market and, in due course, reassess the situation accordingly.” High-yield pulp, also known as bleached chemi-thermo-mechanical pulp (BCTMP), is used in printing and writing papers, paperboard as well as tissue and towelling.
Veteran nuke cruiser sold off for scrap
The world’s first nuclear-powered surface warship, the USS Long Beach, was auctioned as scrap metal to be dismantled and recycled, after spending the past 17 years mothballed in a naval shipyard in Washington state. The vessel, the first American cruiser since the end of World War Two to be built new from the keel up, boasted the world’s highest bridge and is said to be the last such US vessel with teak decks. [NB - It was later sold via a sealed bid with no price disclosed]
Metal imports to China rise significantly
China copper imports advanced sharply by 23.6% year-on-year to 346,223 tonnes in June this year and dipped by 17.5% month-on-month, according to the General Administration of Customs data. China is the world’s largest copper consumer. China imported 2.5 million tonnes of copper in the first half of 2012. According to the Customs data, country’s unwrought aluminium imports advanced sharply by 38.9% year-on-year (64,491 tonnes in June 2011) to 89,576 tonnes in June this year and dropped 1.7% month-on-month (91,083 tonnes in May). China imported 614,000 metric tons of aluminum in the first half of 2012, up 33.3% compared with a year earlier.
Israel pushes farmers to recycle plastics
In Isael, a joint team from the Ministry of Environmental Protection and the Ministry of Agriculture has submitted proposals for recycling of plastic materials used in the agricultural sector. More than 15,000 tonnes of plastic are in use by Israeli farmers in greenhouses, irrigation systems, and crop protection sheets, as well as various nets and baskets. The inter-ministerial team recommends making it mandatory for the farmers to separate plastic from the rest of the waste and transfer it to material recovery facilities. The Ministry of Environmental Protection is due to submit the necessary changes to legislation to regulate recycling in the agricultural sector.
Mauser expands South Africa presence
A subsidiary of Mauser has acquired a majority shareholding in Container Solutions South Africa, a recycling company with operations in Johannesburg and Durban. Hans-Peter Schaefer, CEO of the Mauser group, said: “We are thrilled to enter the South African market and to further broaden our world-wide presence. Container Solutions South Africa is a first-class reconditioner with high quality services and compliance standards.” CSSA is introducing new automated washing lines for the operations in Durban and Johannesburg and the investment includes the relocating of both CSSA sites to new, larger premises later this year.
German firm takes over Theiss
Thiess Waste Management Services is being taken over by the German company Remondis. The £143m deal will allow Remondis to expand its market presence in Australia and put it among the five largest companies in Australia. Theiss Waste Management operates transfer stations, logistics depots, recycling and waste treatment facilities and landfills in the states of Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. According to Remondis, the company generates annual revenues of £151m and has approximately 300 employees.