National Plan for PFAS to released to protect environment and health

The heads of all state and territory EPAs and the Federal Government have released a National Environment Management Plan for PFAS (per-and poly-fluoroalkyl substances) to help protect the environment and human health.

The National Plan details what regulators view as suitable practices to handling contamination and waste from these long-lasting chemicals.

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It describes how to properly deal with and clean up contaminated sites, how to best treat soil and waste, and methods for safely destroying the chemicals.

PFAS are manufactured chemicals that make products heat resistant, non-stick, water repellent, and weather and stain resistant.

Prior to the plan, there was no consistent guidance or direction for communities that had been affected by PFAS.

Environment Protection Authority Victoria’s Executive Director Assessments, Tim Eaton, said PFAS chemicals have been used for decades in a range of products, including pesticides, stain repellents and fire-fighting foams.

“PFAS compounds have had a wide range of uses because they resist heat, chemical and biological degradation, and are very stable,” Mr Eaton said.

“There is now growing concern worldwide about the effects of PFAS on our health and on animals and plants, because of that chemical stability and the fact that they easily enter the environment, moving into soil, creeks, rivers and lakes.  We know there are sites with PFAS contamination, so we are working collectively to manage them.”

The plan can be read at http://www.epa.vic.gov.au/PFAS_NMP

New recycling technology processes tyres into resources

Tyre processing company Pearl Global has begun commissioning its first production plant to recycle tyres into valuable secondary products.

The technology uses an applied heating process called thermal desorption, which converts waste tyres into liquid hydrocarbon, high tensile steel and carbon char, which can be sold separately or processed further.

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Pearl has constructed its first production plant, with two thermal desorption units (TDUs), and initial commissioning is under way.

Each TDU can process approximately 5000 tons (4536 tonnes) of shredded rubber at full production, the equivalent to 50,000 car tyres. On average, this equates to 1.5 million litres of raw fuel a week.

The materials are being developed into potential commercial products, including a degreaser product, which recently passed a critical performance test.

Over 51 million used tyres get discarded in Australia a year, but only five per cent are recycled. Pearl’s technology focuses on extracting the resources from tyres instead of using them for constructing children’s playgrounds or exporting.

Pearl recently received planning approval from the Gold Coast City Council and has approval from Queensland’s Department of Environment and Heritage. It already holds an environmental licence from the Western Australian Government Department of Environment Regulation.

“This is a turning point for used tyre processing in Australia. We are the first company in Australia to receive licenses for the thermal treatment of rubber, to reclaim and recover valuable products for resale,” Pearl Executive Chairman Gary Foster said.

“Our technology is a significant advancement on other methods of processing waste tyres because it has low emissions, no hazardous by-products, requires no chemical intervention and is the only process that meets the standard emissions criteria set by the Australian regulators for this type of technology,” he said.

Mr Foster said the technology will help Australia handle a serious global environmental problem.

“We believe there is great potential in Australia to immediately deploy our technology at sites close to where tyres have been stockpiled,” Mr Foster said.

“With governments seeking or mandating solutions for waste, Pearl is well placed to offer a solution that is both environmentally sound and commercially viable.”

 

Almost 100 million containers collected by NSW Return and Earn

Almost 100 million containers have been returned since the NSW Return and Earn scheme began in December last year, according to the official website.

Reverse vending machine technology, alongside over-the-counter and automated depots have helped NSW reach this goal.

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NSW Minister for Environment, Gabrielle Upton said over five million drink containers had been returned over the weekend.

Nepean Distributors, a drinks product supplier to schools and sporting club canteens, have been supporting the scheme and having a positive impact on the local community, according to EPA NSW.

In two months, Nepean Distributors has processed 133,034 containers, with over record of 11,879 in a day.

“It is making people, especially kids and teenagers, think about recycling. We want to help change their mindset to think about their environment and cleaning up their local park,” Managing Director of Nepean Distributors, Anthony Morrissey said.

They have also teamed up with local sports groups such as Macarthur BMX to help fundraise for the club and encourage locals to donate their refunds to charities like the African AIDS Foundation.

Worldwide events planned for first ever Global Recycling Day

The world’s first Global Recycling Day will take place on 18 March, with cities across the globe signing on to hold events.

London, Washington DC, Sao Paolo, Paris, Johannesburg, Delhi, and Dubai will host events to encourage people to change their habits when it comes to recycling.

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The Bureau for International Recycling (BIR) hopes to change the way people around the world think about recycling, changing their mindset from waste to resource.

Individuals attending the events will be invited to pledge to change their habits in at least one way and to sign the BIR’s petition for the day to be recognised by the United Nations.

The hashtag #GlobalRecyclingDay will let people on social media get involved to help people share video and pictures of them celebrating recycling.

Global Recycling Day aims to showcase how critical recycling is to people’s day to day lives.

BIR President Ranjit Baxi said the first global recycling day is a vitally important new date in the global calendar and a joint responsibility for individuals, communities, businesses and leaders.

“To truly harness the power of recycling we must adopt a global approach to its collection, processing and use, and this Day recognises the global nature of the industry and the issue.  It is time we put the planet first and all commit to spend 10 more minutes a day ensuring that materials are disposed of properly,” Mr Baxi said.

“Global Recycling Day is also a wakeup call to all of us, wherever we live,” he said.

“We must unite with those involved in the industry – from workers on waste mountains to the world’s largest businesses – to help them to make the best use of what we dispose of, to make recycling easier, inherent even in the design of products, and to stop expecting countries to simply accept recyclables which are difficult and costly to process.”

December / January 2018

Astec’s AMS FT2618VM Fast Trax high frequency screening plant

Astec’s AMS FT2618VM Fast Trax high frequency screening plant was designed to work with track crushers for use in tight spots.

The AMS FT2618VM comes with a double deck PEP Vari-Vibe high frequency screen, suitable for a wide range of applications, from crushed stone to reclaimed asphalt pavement. The PEP Vari-Vibe high frequency screen comes in a 6’ x 18’ top deck and 6’ x 12’ bottom deck for improved screen production. High frequency screens offer many advantages when compared to conventional screens, from higher production capabilities to more efficient sizing. Astec Australia says the track screening plant provides the highest screen capacity in the market for material separation, with a size range of 25mm to 0.6mm.

The FT2618VM features a self-contained diesel power with a standard wireless remote for on-site movement. Higher production capacity is achieved by a strong screen vibration directly applied to the screen media. The high number of vibrating revolutions per minute allows material to stratify and separate at a much faster rate than conventional screens.

Other advantages of the FT2618VM include vinyl dust cover, which provides dust control and cleaner air in the work area. Quick setup times give producers more time to produce material, while central grease points make routine services easier.

astecaustralia.com.au

CRS KF 44-18 Kinetic Flow Screen: Lincom Group

The flip flow technology of the KF 44-18 allows recyclers, materials recovery facilities and the waste management industry to extract greater volumes of recyclable fine materials from waste streams.

The machine aims to extract these volumes after a primary screening for blending or further separation as single-size saleable material. The increased extraction of recyclables also works to reduce tip-to-landfill volumes, while lowering transport costs and landfill tax, according to Australian distributor Lincom Group. It also contributes to environmental preservation in the long-term.

Based on the kinetic flow principle, the machine produces an aggressive ‘pitch, throw and action’ that results in clean fines material. A screening area of 1.80m x 4.4mm provides a high throughput and the self-cleaning Vulkalon D15 screen elements can be replaced easily.

The CRS KF 44-18 Kinetic Flow Screen works in a range of applications, including: fine mixed C&D waste (0-80mm); mixed organic waste, damp and sticky materials such as powders, soils and sand, shredded mulch or organic materials.

Some of the notable features include a simple three-stage set up, a rapid conversion from three-way split to two-way split and a smart design to minimise weight while keeping strength and robustness intact. An open chassis design also aims to provide extensive access below screen to aid mesh changes. A variable speed feeder features heavy duty rollers, a rigid hopper structure and folding hopper extensions.

lincom.com.au