\"Although urban areas in EU only cover around a 4% of the total surface, almost a 75% of the EU citizens live in cities and in their urban areas, data projected to reach 82% in 2050.An adequate global waste management system is necessary to avoid further environmental and...
\"Although urban areas in EU only cover around a 4% of the total surface, almost a 75% of the EU citizens live in cities and in their urban areas, data projected to reach 82% in 2050.
An adequate global waste management system is necessary to avoid further environmental and social problems.
Despite some of the current urban municipal waste streams are conveniently managed and valorised, there are still several waste streams that have limited opportunities to positively contribute to generate value for EU society. One of these is Bulky Waste, which by reason of its bulk, shape, or weight cannot be placed in a container or bundled. This waste can include furniture, mattresses, upholstery, appliances, textile, garden and outdoor, or other large fixtures and fittings, representing a EU generation of 19 Mt/year. ITs characteristics greatly vary depending on the situation of every country.
More than 60% of bulky waste is currently landfilled in EU (around 11.5 Mt) because there is neither specific global EU legislation nor cost-effective valorisation methods.
URBANREC is implementing an eco-innovative and integral bulky waste management system in different EU regions: Northern, Mediterranean, Eastern and South Eastern areas, represented by 3 EU-28 countries and Turkey. These countries currently have very different urban waste recycling rates (around 70% in Belgium, 25-30% in Spain, 20% in Poland, less than 5% in Turkey), being representatives of the different scenarios at European level for the evaluation of different activities proposed in URBANREC.
From the global management point of view, URBANREC aims to improve logistics â€“ implementing collection and reuse-, separation and disassembling processes of bulky waste - implementing advanced techniques such as fragmentation (3D cut)-, to obtain high quality raw materials, i.e. metal, plastics, wood, textile, foams ... and promoting innovative valorisation routes for those which are considered more problematic.
URBANREC is focused on the following streams: PU foam, mixed hard plastics and mixed textiles, nowadays not recycled due to lack of eco-innovative cost-effective solutions and difficulties in finding final applications, and wood, which represents the highest bulky waste percentage. Case studies detailed in Table a).
URBANREC includes an assessment of current situation in the 4 areas and the definition of educational programmes, to encourage citizens and urban traders â€˜participation in collaboration with the local authorities involved (OVAM, DV, URZAD and BORNOVA). Attached image \"\"Figure a URBANREC global scheme\"\".
URBANREC is also improving separation/disassembly and selection phases focusing on CA site management, working on logistics and distribution of different residues and implementing an innovative size reduction/separation technology (fragmentation/3D cut).
RO partners in URBANREC (AIMPLAS, CENTEXBEL, FRAUNHOFER and IYTE), and companies (ECOFRAG, BPP, RESCOLL, RAMPF, EUROSPUMA, DELAX, PROCOTEX and VANHEEDE) have experience and scientific background to develop these chemical/physical treatments for the final products targeted. URBANREC also considers the use of Eco-labels contributing to Green Public Procurements (GPP) and Innovative Public Procurement (IPP). Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) is also being considered.
The city amenity sites (CA sites) in URBANREC (CONSORCIO, IMOG) are being evaluated:economic and environmental perspective (IZNAB, IOS-PIB). All the results are base to optimize bulky waste management in the 4 zones with the support of the local authorities.
Work completed -30 months:
-Complete evaluation of bulky waste management in the 4 regions (Valencia-Spain, Flanders-Belgium, Warsaw-Poland and Izmir-Turkey), as representative of different EU zones, employed as a baseline.
-Flanders region implemented new alternatives for improving bulky waste collection enhancing re-use. Customer portal in IMOG CAS and bulky waste app finished, further steps fine-tuning, and test phase are being accomplished.
-The collaborative network.
-Framentation-laminated cutting technology for foam, textile and wood and also shredding technology, mainly for hard plastic stream.
-CHGP technology for bulky waste.
-Different waste streams analysed, and final optimization of fragmentation and shredding technology accomplished.
-Defined routes to treat the selected waste fractions are being optimized and evaluated at industrial scale. Demonstrators obtained:
Mattress (secondary polyols, rebound foam, top layer foam, adhesives and needlefelts).
Isolation panels (textiles and foam).
Plastic reinforced composites from textiles and hard plastics.
Wood Plastic composites (wood).
Methylal (different waste streams, not suitable for previous valorization routes).
-Selection of Ecolabels for each demonstrator.
-Definition of the conditions of implementation of the Environmental Technology Verification ETV program on RAMPF PU chemical degradation process by acidolysis.
-Social analysis is ongoing. Questionnaire on social analysis for the improved bulky waste management was sent to Turkey, Belgium, and Spain and first results analysed.
-The technical evaluation for the implementation of the URBANREC global management system in each area is being implemented (a mattress scanner assessment in Flanders, round-tables & working groups in Warsaw, CA-site in Turkey, re-use container in Spainâ€¦).
-A special working group on legal issues, involving different key stakeholders was set up and meets regularly. As a result, URBANREC aims at creating the right legal framework at European level.
-The environmental, economic and social assessment for the implemented processes and industrial products, is being carried out. The LCA analysis for the starting situation was made for Poland (Warsaw), Turkey (Bornova) and for Spain (Valencia), being modified for Belgium (Imog-region and Flanders) to be adapted to mixed-bulky waste stream.
-Educational programs being implemented in the 4 regions.
- Innovation Management, Business and Exploitation Plans and Dissemination activities.
â€¢ Reduction up to 50 % of the total bulky waste landfilled at local level (4 demo areas).
â€¢ Enhance the bulky waste re-use in 15 % in Harelbeke -Flanders region (network social).
â€¢ Demonstration in Valencia-Spain of innovative fragmentation and catalytic hydro-gasification technology for the 82 % of the bulky waste landfilled (collected and separated, leaving a final landfilling lower than 18 %).
â€¢ The CA Sites treating bulky waste according to URBANREC (Valencia-Spain and Harelbeke-Flanders) will increase profitability in 30 % for the benefit of treat these waste fractions.
â€¢ The technologies developed in URBANREC will contribute to CO2 emissions reduction of about a 20 %.
â€¢ Eco-labels have been selected for the final products (secondary polyols, adhesives, foams, mattress, needlefelts, reinforced plastics, WPC) and ETV assessment is concluded for RAMPF PU chemical degradation process by acidolysis.
â€¢ Preparation of a Guide to implement URBANREC management at EU level.
â€¢ Implementation of educational programs customized to the needs of citizens is ongoing. At least 12.000 citizens will benefit.
â€¢ Non-profit associations and second-hand shops are being contacted and incorporated in the bulky waste logistics routes at the demonstration areas. At least 24 new non-profit associations and second-hand shops is the project target.
More info: http://www.urbanrec-project.eu/.