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SESSION A7
17:20 – 19:00

Chair / Presidente: G. Dino (IT)

Raw materials (RM) and Critical Raw Materials (CRM), are both crucial to Europe’s economy, industry and growth. Minerals and metals represent the basis for any industrial production process. They provide both everyday products and new solutions for modern infrastructure and technologies. Increase in population and living standards will continue to drive growing demand for raw materials. Due to these developments resource efficiency measures such as optimizing reuse and recycling of these materials from anthropogenic deposits such as landfills is of increasing relevance. Europe has somewhere between 150,000 and 500,000 landfill sites which represent potentially a significant reserve of critical and secondary raw materials (CRM and SRM). Such “new ore bodies”, from municipal and industrial landfills as well as from mining waste can be exploited through landfill mining. This approach to waste management is closely linked to two pillars of the EU policy: waste recycling and resource preservation.

Furthermore, the recent adoption of the EU Circular Economy Strategy which includes revised legislative proposal on waste waste management, has introduced a step change in the productive cycles planning: each productive cycle has to be re-designed, in order not to produce waste. Each product coming from a productive activity (products, by-products, secondary raw materials, etc…) has to be employed as “final product”, SRM for other productive cycles, etc…: very little quantity of waste has to be landfilled.

In this context it is fundamental to highlight that WASTE has to be considered as a RESOURCE. The two key concepts that underpin these new resources are: landfill mining and circular economy approaches.

The discussions and debates introduced in the present networking session are:

  • “state of the art” about EU waste production and waste management
  • landfill mining situation across Europe and potential with a UK case study
  • impacts (positive/negative) connected to waste management VS impacts (positive/negative) connected to landfill mining
  • recycling potential of SRM
  • circular economy approach
  • Case studies:
    • SMART GROUND project presentation
    • Landfill mining: the point of view of a MSW management company (landfill and treatment plant)
    • Aggregate from C&DW: the point of view of a C&DW recycling plant
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