For companies that must dispose of solvent-based liquids, solids and sludge, zero waste recycling has become an attractive solution.
The stakes have never been higher. Complex state and federal regulations can be difficult to navigate, and more companies are looking for ways to incorporate sustainable methods of disposal for these challenging waste streams into their waste management plans.
The good news is advanced developments in waste management are giving hazardous waste generators the opportunity to recycle their industrial solvents in a more economical and environmentally conscious way.
What Is Zero Waste?
Zero waste is exactly as it sounds … the goal is to send nothing to a landfill and reuse as much as possible. The term “zero waste” is used widely across many industries and often leans heavily toward consumer goods.
However, zero waste is becoming more widely accepted in industries that produce hazardous waste, where it is more important than ever to reduce the amount of waste in landfills and when companies are striving to improve their sustainability initiatives.
It is in these industries where zero waste has become less about meeting a definition and more about redefining systems.
Many companies are now seeing the value of replacing a “linear” economic model with a circular one that promotes extending the life of materials. The goal of a circular economic model is to use as few new resources as possible by keeping materials in circulation, essentially producing zero waste.
Zero waste companies often experience a competitive advantage, seeing reduced costs, minimized environmental impacts and boosted public images.
So, how does a company that disposes of solvent-based liquids, solids and sludge incorporate zero waste into its waste management?
How Does A Company Go Zero Waste?
The key is choosing a waste treatment facility like Temarry Recycling that offers a closed loop recycling process.
Closed loop recycling is a restorative and regenerative process. It works to keep materials at their highest utility and value, and it embraces circular economy concepts. The goal is to recycle a material indefinitely so that the properties of the material do not degrade.
In the case of an existing spent physical product like industrial solvents, a new product with a useful waste byproduct is produced.
Here’s how the process works:
A waste to energy process begins the circular loop.
- Organic solids with sufficient BTU are converted to energy in the form of steam.
- Waste is fed by a conveyor into the primary stage for thermal destruction at 1500 degrees F.
- All vapors and gases are then directed to secondary thermal treatment at 1500 degrees F.
- Inorganic solids, or ash, from the primary stage are quenched and fall into an ash hopper.
- Heat is then directed to a 200-horsepower steam generator.
- The remaining gases are directed to a modern two-stage venturi scrubber to ensure that only clean water vapor is emitted into the atmosphere.
Solvent distillation continues the process.
- Using the steam from the waste to energy process as energy to power the recovery stills, spent solvents are re-manufactured.
- This allows the solvents to be sold back into industry for their original solvent properties.
Water treatment closes the circular loop.
- This treatment process extracts usable water from industrial hazardous wastes.
- Treated water is then used on-site for industrial needs, including the waste to energy equipment and a cooling tower.
Although closed loop recycling is not limited to solvents, above is the regenerative process by which the zero waste recycling of solvent-based liquids, solids and sludge is achieved.
Where Is Recycling Of Industrial Solvents Available?
Temarry Recycling, which operates out of San Diego, has a Treatment, Storage and Disposal Facility (TSDF) just across the border in Tecate, Mexico.
This facility is a great choice for companies located in the western United States because the transportation distance of their waste is much shorter. Currently, some companies send their waste to Kansas and Arkansas for fuel blending.
While this is an environmentally-friendly option as well, an across-the-country trek substantially increases transportation costs and their carbon footprint due to the fuel trucks used to transport the waste.
Instead, Temarry’s state-of-the-art facility incorporates closed loop recycling within a short distance to Southern California, while providing the most sustainable method of disposal for spent industrial solvents.
It is important to keep in mind as well that as a hazardous waste generator, you are responsible for the proper off-site transportation and disposal of your waste. This is referred to as the cradle to grave requirement.
Because Temarry’s facility is located in Tecate, Mexico, your liability for the waste ends at the U.S. border. Temarry becomes the Principal Responsible Party in the United States and Recicladora Temarry de Mexico accepts generator liability in Mexico.
Why Is Zero Waste Important?
Updating waste disposal plans to incorporate zero waste initiatives can be beneficial not only for the environment, but for a company.
As mentioned above, zero waste aims to keep materials at their highest value and out of landfills. By fulfilling the goal of zero waste, companies often see:
- Reduced costs by cutting waste disposal expenditures such as transportation costs
- Greater environmental impact by reducing the amount of waste and recycling it
- Boosted image thanks to sustainable practices that are appealing to consumers
- Competitive advantage by being on the leading edge of waste management practices
By taking advantage of Temarry’s closer facility, that uses forward-thinking solutions to recycle solvents and eliminate waste, you can achieve the highest level of sustainable waste management.