Eco-innovation is at its best when the waste of one industry becomes the raw material of another. This is precisely what the EU funded research project CAPS, is attempting to do with waste sludge from the paper industry. Its objective is to convert it into a highly absorbent material capable of cleaning up oil and chemical spills.
There are about 18 million tons of paper mill sludges produced in the EU, each year. Most of it is disposed of by burning it. This could soon change. Franc Černec, project leader at the Technological, Environmental and Logistic Centre in Koper, Slovenia came up with an innovative idea almost 17 years ago to reuse this by-product of the paper industry. “I knew about the high absorption rate of paper mill sludge for years,” he said. “So I thought, why not use these characteristics and turn the waste into a useful product.”
Tags: fluid, hydrophobic, absorbed, fuel, Finland, South America, biodiesel
Source: ScienceDaily, 2013-02-25.