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There’s profit in sticks and stones

new equipment screening and dewatering1

With the introduction of an advanced recycling system by CDEnviro at the Meece landfill in Staffordshire, waste business Biffa has extended its approach to waste management with a second treatment and recovery facility for road sweepings.

The company’s first such plant is based at Brookhurst Wood, Horsham, at one of the company’s 14 operational landfill sites. The CDEnviro system was purchased in order to process 50,000 tonnes a year of street cleansing residues from surrounding areas. But the processing solution is now accepting multiple waste streams, including residual material from local MRFs.

In recent years Biffa has invested around £35m in MRFs to improve segregation, processing and decontamination of single-stream and mixed recyclable materials. The glass fraction was initially trialled on a traditional system, but the results from the CDEnviro unit are far superior both in terms of quality and quantity of glass recovered.

The aim of the second road sweepings recycling facility is to provide a treatment location for councils and commercial waste producers to maximise the capability of a waste stream and divert it from landfill.

This development of Biffa’s strategy will strengthen the network of waste management sites serving Staffordshire and contribute to overall recycling rates. The aim of moving road sweepings up the waste hierarchy has never been clearer for Biffa following the installation of its first CDEnviro system in 2016.

As John Orchard, engineering manager at Biffa Waste Services, explains: “Following the successful installation and operation of the recycling system at Brookhurst Wood, we were confident in CDEnviro’s ability to replicate a twin system at the Meece landfill site.

“The system is both robust and practical for us, while helping to achieve our waste targets. We were assured of the high-quality product we could produce, and developed our facilities throughout the UK to offer a nationwide approach to waste.”

The CDEnviro technology has been developed to receive and treat up to 25 tonnes an hour of road sweepings and residual waste. With efficiency in mind, the system has been designed to clean and separate the incoming waste effectively to produce recyclable and reusable materials.

The equipment comprises a reception hopper for the feed material, trommel pre-screen and the Hydro:grade system that washes, scrubs and screens the waste material before further dewatering occurs. Hydro:grade is designed to offer superior separation of lightweight and fine materials through a series of density separation techniques, ensuring the highest quality products.

The Meece facility has the addition of a water treatment solution, CDEnviro’s Hydro:flo. This ensures that clean water is recycled around the system continuously in an effort to reduce waste water volumes.

Hydro:flo removes fine particles from the process flow which settle at the bottom of a tank, allowing clean water to overflow the weir of the Hydro:flo and be pumped back through the system. Minimising the use of natural resources and cutting the burden on downstream wastewater equipment are key benefits of the Hydro:flo.

Reducing the wastewater management requirements results in a cleaner and more efficient site to operate. Maximising its reception capacity, the landfill can now offer treatment of contaminated materials that were once sent to landfill, in turn minimising landfill volumes.

Road sweepings and gully waste are becoming increasingly recognised as a valuable resource for recovery and reuse. Recycling them greatly reduces the harmful effects of landfill on our surroundings and environment.

Through the treatment facilities at Horsham and Meece, Biffa is able to recover clean dewatered sand, stone, and aggregates, which can be reused in a range of applications. The company’s investment in innovation and technology such as this offers huge cost savings to both its business and its customers.

Nicola Hughes is marketing executive at CDEnviro

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