DRYWASTE (LIFE08 ENV/GR/000566)
Development and demonstration of an innovative household dryer for the treatment of organic waste.
01/01/2010 - 30/06/2012
According to the «Green Paper», Bio-waste is defined as biodegradable garden and park waste, food and kitchen waste from households, restaurants, caterers and retail premises, and comparable waste from food processing plants. It does not include forestry or agricultural residues, manure, sewage sludge, or other biodegradable waste such as natural textiles, paper or processed wood. It also excludes those by-products of food production that never become waste. The total annual arising of bio-waste in the EU was estimated at 76.5-102 Mt food and garden, waste included in mixed municipal solid waste and up to 37 Mt from the food and drink industry. Bio-waste is a general wet waste. There are two major streams, green waste from parks, gardens etc. and kitchen waste. The former includes usually 50-60% water and more wood (lingo-cellulosis), the latter contains no wood but up to 80% water. Very different national policies apply to bio-waste management, ranging from little action in some Member States to ambitious policies in others. This can lead to increased environmental impacts and can hamper or delay full utilization of advanced bio-waste management techniques. One promising option for the management of domestic organic household waste is to encourage the householders to separate and dry the organic waste at home in order to significantly reduce its volume. In general, moisture content of household waste is generally very high but varies significantly. The average moisture content of household waste can range from 55% to 85%, values that are considered to be particularly high. Thus, the removal of moisture content significantly reduces the quantity of organic waste.
Objectives: The aim of DRYWASTE was to design, develop, test, optimize, evaluate and demonstrate an innovative household dryer for the drying of Bio-waste in order to significantly reduce its volume at source. The produced "final dry organic waste product" without the moisture content and with the inactivation of pathogens can be further used in different alternative and environmental friendly ways. Therefore, the "DryWaste" meets the EU environmental standards and is suitable for further use, bringing associated environmental and financial benefits. The objectives were:
- to promote the dissemination of an innovative and environmental promising waste treatment technology, aiming at the reduction of organic waste volume at source and resulting in the mitigation of climate changes
- to design, develop, test, optimize, evaluate and demonstrate an innovative home drying system for the drying of organics in order to reduce the volume of organics at source, through the removal of waste water content. The prototype home drying system will be characterized by flexibility, compactness, convenience in use and capability of drying small quantities of organic waste in a relatively short time period at households
- to introduce high level of technical innovation related with the concept of waste separation of home combined with household drying of organics
- to significantly reduce at source the quantity of household organic waste going to final disposal while avoiding an increase of emissions to air, water and soil
- to lead to the production of a “final dry organic waste product” (after the drying process) without moisture content, which can be further used in alternative environmental friendly ways
- to investigate the alternative uses of the “final dry organic waste product”. The “final organic product “is more likely to meet the environmental standards and be suitable for further treatment and use, bringing associated environmental and economic benefits
- to demonstrate the prototype home drying system in selected households in the area under concern
- to provide insight on how the prototype household dryer can be implemented in larger scale (meaning in many households) and simultaneously to reinforce its implementation in Greece and in other European countries after the completion of the program. DRYWASTE will lead to concrete and practical results in order to be able to implement the innovative drying system at several municipalities and cities after the evaluation of its economic and technical viability. The implementation of the prototype home dryer constitutes an innovative and flexible “instrument” to reduce the quantities of organic waste at source
- the full-scale implementation of the innovative household drying system will significantly result in:
- the reduction of greenhouse emissions since reduced organic waste quantities will be disposed to landfills,
- the reduction of waste transports and simultaneously in the reduction of garbage truck emissions (since the frequency of waste collection will be reduced). Hence, the implementation of DRYWASTE will mitigate climate changes.
- additionally, the reduction in the waste transports will result in the reduction of the fuels quantities consumed for the transportation of the garbage trucks.
- the reduction in the frequency of waste collection will lead to the prevention of different nuisances such as odours, noise pollution etc
- to provide a well documented and effective option for the management and treatment of organic household waste at source
- to achieve – promote suitable separation of household waste at source and subsequently to reinforce the waste recycling and recovery in order to contribute to meeting the local recycling – recovering targets as set in the relevant EU Directives and the national strategy
- to evaluate the environmental benefits, the social benefits and the economic feasibility of this prototype home drying system
- to identify key issues and indicators in relation to meeting the targets set by the Landfill Directive 1999/31/EEC
- to provide information to local authorities that will assist in introducing successful and cost-effective organic waste separation and treatment schemes in their localities and also to the householders in order to increase their participation and their environmental awareness
- to provide information to relevant stakeholders and target groups that will assist in introducing a successful and cost-effective option for the reduction of organic waste at source
- to establish information on existing biodegradable municipal waste management practices
- to provide information on technologies available for diverting biodegradable municipal waste away from landfill
- to raise awareness of relevant authorities and the public
- to disseminate the project progress and findings through the interactive website, meetings, conferences, leaflets, organized demonstration activities, meetings, trips, production of DVD film and training sessions. The objectives of the proposed project are in line with the objectives of the Environmental Technologies Action Plan (ETAP), the Sixth Environment Action Program, the Landfill Directive 1999/31/EC and the National & Regional Solid Waste Planning requirements.
Results and environmental benefits: It must be noted that the drying of biowaste at home is a totally innovative concept. It can be complementary to home composting or anaerobic digestion. By drying biowaste a constant carbon source is created which can be used for green energy production at the required time and at the required place. This constant or base energy (compatible to fossil fuel energy) cannot be created neither by composting (where no energy is produced) nor by anaerobic digestion from which energy is obtained within a small time frame and after the production of biowaste. The dried biowaste can be kept for long periods of time without any odors and can be used for energy production in places very far from the production area according to the needs. This can be accomplished because the dried material is very light since most of the water has been removed and at the same time its volume has been reduced by 90% compared to the initial waste volume. As a result, transportation costs of the dried-end products are very low. In addition, as this material is odorless it can be stored at households for a long period of time, thus reducing the collection rate of waste, and consequently reducing the truck emissions and the collection cost. DRYWASTE can lower the volume and weight of organic wastes while regions’ cost-reductions are significant.