New publication: Case study about IVAR MSW sorting facility in Norway

Sorting technologies Case study about a MSW sorting facility in Norway – IVAR

The IVAR plant combines post-sorting of residual waste with recycling of some of the plastic waste fractions. At the plant five different fraction of plastics, four fractions of paper, bio-waste, glass, and metal packaging are separated. In total 83.2 % by weight of the incoming waste is sent to energy recovery (WtE) and 16.8 wt% is recovered for material recycling. It is estimated that approx. 82 wt% of the plastic in the waste is separated. Today they also have spare capacity to receive more waste for sorting, however the costs are relatively high and the economic incentive from the sales of the sorted materials are not enough. The largest renumeration comes from the Norwegian producer responsibility schemes for sorting plastic, metal packaging and beverage cartons.

The bottle neck of the recycling industry with the current state of the art is the quality of the plastic waste. Only part of the plastic waste is suitable for recycling (have a market for the recycled material). New solutions for both plastic sorting and recycling is needed to increase the impact and circularity from the recycling. It will be crucial to find solutions for low quality and mixed plastic materials. There also need to be measures put in place to create a market pull for the recycled material.

While all the recycled material generates positive climate effects, the recycled plastic generates double gains. It reduces the emissions for the production of virgin plastics and at the same time it reduces the direct fossil CO2 emissions generated by the WtE plant. Considering upcoming regulations in Norway, with increased CO2 taxes, the investments for more residual sorting plants in Norway is likely to increase.


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