Global Cement Magazine: Interview by Peter Edwards

Entsorga Italia SpA is based in Tortona, Italy. It was founded in 1997 on the basis of leveraging technology to improve environmental protection and standards. Today, Entsorga is a leading provider of technologies such as composting, mechanical biological treatment (MBT) and anaerobic digestion for both organic and municipal solid wastes. Here, the company’s Managing Director and President of the Board Pier Cella speaks to Global Cement’s Peter Edwards about a new and exciting project with the Essroc Martinsburg cement plant in West Virginia, USA.

Company and process introduction

Global Cement (GC): Please could you briefly introduce Entsorga?

Pier Cella (PC): Entsorga is a technology company that is a provider of composting, aerobic and anaerobic digestion and mechanical biological treatment (MBT) plants. The company has an impressive track record of plants that it has built in Europe and North Africa.

Now we are building a new plant in the US while many projects are in the pipeline in other countries such as Canada and Brazil, as well as in the Far East. Entsorga has developed a comprehensive suite of proven and bankable solutions aimed at improving environmental protection, including the Entsorga MBT process.

GC: How does the MBT process work?

PC: The MBT process is a proven technology that has successfully been used to meet European reduced landfill disposal requirements, develop more economically-feasible methods for municipal solid waste (MSW) disposal and create an environmentally low impact method of solid waste disposal.

The process converts MSW to solid recovered fuel (SRF) to a required specification in four stages: reception, pre-treatment, biological treatment and refining. The mechanical pre-treatment prepares the input waste. The biological treatment harnesses the bio-energy within the organic fraction of the waste to trigger aerobic fermentation, which develops heat from the organic fraction to be used for waste drying. Temperatures are typically in the region of 40-50°C but only around 3% of the total organic fraction is consumed by this process. Due to its biogenic con- tent it is eligible to be considered as a Renewable source. On top of this, it was also confirmed by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as meeting the eligibility criteria to be considered a ‘non-waste’ product.

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