Hi-tech WEEE recycling in Australia; Alba re-organisation boosts figures; Philadelphia’s recycling rate; Cyprus looks to composting; Plastics recycling plant in Queensland
WEEE recycling with ‘smart’ robotics
Researchers from the University of New South Wales say robots with cognitive ability could help automate the WEEE recycling process. Academics from the School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, the School of Computer Science and others have shown a robot can be taught to disassemble LCD screens. The industrial robots learn how different end-of-life electronic products are designed. One scientist said if the robot saw an unknown model it could take up to 35 minutes to take it apart but, next time, the process on the same model took 12 minutes.
Alba’s higher profitd after revamp
German environmental services and recycling group Alba SE has reported 10% year-on-year decline in its turnover to €1.18bn (£942m) in the first three quarters of this year. However, pre-tax profits for the nine-month period increased to €14m from €9.5m in the same period. The company said the integration of its ferrous and non-ferrous recycling divisions with the waste management and recycling operations, as well as the resulting “leaner structures”, were having a positive effect.
Philadelphia’s recycling rate
The recycling rate in the US city of Philadelphia has gone up by 155% over the past six years, with a 21% diversion rate. In 2008, the figure was just 8%. It diverts around 50% of its waste, including industrial and construction, from landfill. The city collected 128,000 tonnes of kerbside recyclables this year, the most ever.
Dominican Republic’s EfW pilot project
The Dominican Republic, in conjunction with Germany, has established a €4.5m (£3.6m) energy from waste pilot project dubbed ‘Zack’ to reduce the amount of oil derivatives used in cement production. This project will help Dominican Republic to advance its cement and residual waste green development plan and Zack is due to be fully implemented by June 2018.
Reducing household waste in Cyprus
Ayia Napa in Cyprus is planning to cut household waste by boosting composting. The municipality plans within a very short time to provide all households with a free compost bin. The island is among the member states of the EU with the highest per capita waste production, with the average Cypriot producing 2kg of waste every day
Biomass power plant in Bangladesh
Malaysia’s Renewable Energy Sources and Well Trade of Bangladesh have joined forces to set up a biomass power plant in Chittagong city, with an initial investment of $16m (£10.2m). The plant will produce 10MW of electricity from biomass by using municipal solid wastes. The two parties are planning to establish more such power plants in Dhaka and other cities if the pilot project turns out to be successful.
The Daily Star
Plastics facility in Queensland
Replas of Australia has commissioned a new plastics recycling facility in Queensland. The plant will reprocess both flexible and rigid mixed plastic scrap collected and produce 200 different items such as garden posts, boardwalk material and outdoor fitness equipment.