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Pyrolyysin potentiaali jätemuovin käsittelymenetelmä nä. Ympäristökuormitukset ja kustannusvaikutukset
24 August 2011
Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT)
The publication is in Finnish, but it has an English abstract.
The English name of the publication:
Pyrolysis as a method to treat plastic waste. Environmental loads and cost effects
The abstract of the publication:
In this publication, the feasibility of tertiary recycling of plastic waste is discussed, and the possibility of rotary kiln pyrolysis to develop as a potential method for treating mixed plastic waste is studied. For the comparison of environmental loads and economics, two alternative concepts to treat a waste flow containing plastic and wood were established. One is based on the rotary kiln pyrolysis of plastic wastes to produce plastic oil and the incineration of residual wood, whereas in the other concept the entire waste flow is incinerated.
The calculation of environmental loads includes air emissions of greenhouse gases, nitrogen oxides, sulphur dioxides and fine particles. Evaluation of the two concepts on the basis of environmental loads showed that pyrolysing plastic and incinerating residual wood seems to be a weaker option. However, with the exception of GHG emissions, there were major uncertainties with respect to the evaluation results. Furthermore, the loads from the usage phase of the plastic oil formed as a product of pyrolysis are not taken into account as there is no data available on the actual emissions generated when such oil is used to fuel engines. The preliminary estimation is, however, that the plastic oil produced would be suitable for replacing heavy fuel oil. Trial runs in practice would be crucial for better analysis of the feasibility of and demand for such a product.
According to the cost analysis, a plastic pyrolysing plant is not as socially beneficial as an energy production plant located in an industrial area. However, it seems to be a more cost-effective option than an energy production plant located in an urban area. This highlights the significant effect of the assumed plant location on the analysis results. From the social point of view, a pyrolysis plant may be considered as a competitive alternative to energy production plants, particularly in areas where there is no constant demand for power plant produced heat energy. Nevertheless, the commercial profitability of pyrolysis plants is borderline and clearly lower than that of energy production plants located in industrial areas.
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