A deal to divert 10,000 tonnes of incinerator bottom ash from landfill to be used as fill aggregate has been brokered by the National Industrial Symbiosis Programme. The UK has an established history using bottom ash from coal fired power stations in the blockmaking industry but, NISP explained, using ash from energy-from-waste plants is less common.
This means more than half a million tonnes of IBA goes to landfill each year in England and Wales, the programme said.
After identifying a number of IBA producers in its region, NISPs Yorkshire and Humber team brought them together with construction blockmakers Gilbert Chapple Haulage. GCH had been sourcing ash to use in its products for many years.
Tried and tested
After trials with IBA, GCH created a fill material that met the needs of the engineering and construction markets. It also complies with Environment Agency requirements.
GCH director Gilbert Chapple said: Our first experience with NISP has proved extremely productive. We find that information about various types of material that are currently in need of a home comes frequently and accurately from the team.
GCH has also secured a number of routes to market for pipe bedding and trenchfill material.
NISP said that although this type of processing is routine across Europe and particularly in Scandinavia, it is less common in the UK. This is because of the distance between IBA producers and the main reprocessing facilities. As a result growing volumes of IBA are being sent to landfill.