|Register for the 4th Enhanced Landfill Mining Symposium on 5 and 6 February, 2018, in Belgium: Enhanced Landfill Mining & the circular economy (ELFM IV)|
It probably seems unthinkable for you but Europe has at least 500,000 landfills full of waste. Left unattended these landfills may eventually cause all kind of health and environmental issues. Doing nothing is no longer an option. As highlighted by our President in a feature article on the World Economic Forum website, the time has come to develop a more visionary strategy for Europe’s landfills. Why not transform the “landfill problem” into a “resource recovery opportunity”? Using Enhanced Landfill Mining (ELFM) a good deal of these 500,000 landfills can provide ample resources in the future, varying from plastics, metals, aggregates, glass and many other products. As such ELFM is part of the transition to a low-carbon, circular, resilient economy.
Recycling 50% of landfilled household waste is possible but we aim for 100%
Household waste landfills are full of things which can be recycled, provided the technologies are there to do so. With presently available technologies it is possible to recycle already at least 50% of the landfilled household waste. But with EURELCO we go one step further. We aim for near 100% recycling. Today, industrial incinerators can turn our freshly produced garbage into electricity and ashes. It’s a start but we can do much better. With the new plasma gasification technologies we can transform part of the excavated waste from landfills into all kinds of energy like electricity or, even better, biohydrogen or biomethane, which can drive the cleantech mobility of the future. Other fractions of the waste can be transformed into planet-friendly building products such as plasmarock, which can be used for roof tiles, cement, bricks, etc. That’s the way to go for scientists and engineers.
Industrial landfills harbour base and critical metals
Apart from household landfill sites, a significant part of the 500,000+ landfills in Europe are so-called “mono-landfills”. These are landfills which typically contain just one type of industrial waste. This can be extractive waste from the mining industry or different types of industrial residues from the metal-processing or energy sector. In many cases, these landfills contain vast amounts of base metals (like iron, copper, zinc) and critical metals, which are vital for the future of the EU economy. EURELCO targets the development of metal-recovery technologies, which simultaneously allow to reclaim the metals, while leaving behind clean mineral residue fractions that can be converted into low-carbon building materials. These can range from green cements to inorganic polymers and artificial aggregates. All these products are required for the buildings of the future.
Register before December 1, 2017 for ELFM IV (5 & 6 February, 2017) and receive a discount
During this symposium, the keynote speakers will shed light on the recent progress of landfill mining within the wider circular economy context. Apart from shorter oral presentations, the Symposium features a number of selected keynote lectures from top speakers from both industry (e.g. Renewi, Advanced Plasma Power, Witteveen Bos, Go4Circle, Colruyt, DEME, Group Machiels), research centres (e.g. ETH Zürich, KTH Stockholm, RWTH Aachen, Padua University etc.) and public bodies (incl. OVAM). Collectively, the lectures cover the full value chain for ELFM for both household waste landfills and metal-containing industrial mono-landfills. Unique summary lectures on advanced sorting, solar/plasma gasification, waste-to-binder and metallurgical recovery technologies will be provided. Social, legal and environmental aspects will take centre stage as well, while the closing debate will discuss the barriers and opportunities for ELFM in the 21st Century.