WIT Press

Environmental Assessment Of Waste Transport And Treatment: A Case Study


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G. Ionescu & P. Stefani


This research presents an in-depth environmental analysis of centralized versus distributed approaches on Municipal Solid Waste Management (MSWM) when selective collection (SC) reaches high rates. The goal of this study was to assess the major qualitative and quantitative emissions (CO, CO2, CH4, H2S, NOx, SO2 and Volatile Organic Compounds) resulting from waste transport and treatment. The selection of the input data was made for a MSWM real case study for the Trentino region (Italy). Two main scenarios were developed and compared from an environmental point of view, for the organic fraction of waste (OFMSW) and residual waste (RMSW) treatment on site or at distance. The first scenario considers the OFMSW treatment in the studied region, using an anaerobic digestion process with biogas and compost production or its treatment at about 120 km from the place where the waste material was produced. In the second scenario, the RMSW is designated to an incineration plant that could be placed near the studied region or could be subject pre-treated for Solid Recovered Fuel (SRF) production that can be valorised in a plant located at about 170 km. In order to evaluate the waste transport emissions, the COPERT computer program was used, considering the type of vehicle, fuel, load and speed. For waste treatment the emissions by type of pollutant are also assessed. In the results, it was highlighted that the transport environmental impact is higher in the biological treatment case. The results obtained can be used for the future development of MSW management strategies offering better environmental performances. Keywords: anaerobic digestion, environmental impact, incineration, postcomposting, waste transport.


anaerobic digestion, environmental impact, incineration, postcomposting, waste transport.