According to research carried out by Entec Ltd on behalf of WRAP there is a growing potential for the uptake of recycled glass as a filtration media in industrial wastewater and process water treatment.
The consultants identified four main sectors with the greatest potential for the use of recycled glass filtration media. These are:
manufacturer of food products and beverages
manufacture of pulp and paper
manufacturer of basic metals
manufacture of motor vehicles
Commenting on the research results, WRAP's materials and development manager Bronnie Allen said: "WRAP is looking to stimulate the recycling of an additional 150,000 tonnes per annum of glass into higher value alternate markets and these results are invaluable in helping WRAP to determine key application areas and industries where our focus should be directed.
"Increased regulatory pressure, higher sewage discharge, landfill and mains water costs all add to the need for industries to look at improved filtration media and interest is already strong in using this 100% recycled glass product."
During 2005 WRAP will be funding two sets of operational trials for recycled glass filtration media. These trials will involve the application of recycled glass filtration media for tertiary treatment of domestic and industrial wastewater in several sectors including pulp and paper.
However, some users of the material have questioned the cost of buying the processed glass for use in the filtration media. One commented to letsrecycle.com that the cost needed to compare favourably with existing alternative materials.
WRAP has also announced three pilot courses for its newly revised advanced level training programme for recycling managers. The programme has been updated and will run in several locations during 2005.
The advanced level training programme is a residential course aimed at staff from local authorities, the community/not for profit and private sectors who manage develop and promote collections of recyclable or compostable materials.
The main focuses are equipping delegates with the knowledge, skills and tools needed to make recommendations and lead improvements to the performance, efficiency and cost-effectiveness of municipal waste collection and materials sorting systems that meet end market requirements.