CARTIF researchers will search a new life for EPS waste

15 october 2013

Through the COLRECEPS LIFE+ Project, led by CARTIF.

The main objective of this Project is the implementation of a demonstration prototype plant to recycle to obtain pearls of EPS. These pearls will be used to manufacture new prototype products made of recycled EPS. Through this process, the life cycle of expanded polystyrene is closed, giving an added value to this waste.

The application of the new prototype products is in the food sector and has the advantage that they will be designed especially for the end user with enhanced features to the current. This recycling process has been carried out at laboratory scale by the MATPRI Project which will end this year, and by one of the partners in this proposal (FOREL) which will implement the process in their facilities.

The Project is due to the need to solve an environmental problem such as is the accumulation of large amounts of EPS waste in landfills, which are not biodegradable and because of its low density occupy a large volume. In addition, currently 80% of them are not treated properly, ending in landfilling over than 32.000 tons/year in Spain (based on data of ANAPE), and the remaining 20% is incinerated. The amount of EPS waste generated in Europe in 2010, based on data of CMAI (Chemical Market Associates) was 1,6 million tonnes.

In this Project will be carried out a study of the several logistic and collection alternatives of waste from the previously acquired knowledge of the amount of generated waste, developing the model most adequate. So, the RECEPS will be a pioneer Project in the knowledge of the production conditions of EPS waste generated in an urban zone as Valladolid (Spain).

The Project will also fulfill with environmental policy and legislation of the European Union through the implementation of Directive 2008/98/EC on waste management, reducing waste in landfill and increasing recycling in a more environmentally sustainable.

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