Waste Mnimisation Clubs – Part II

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					Waste Minimisation Clubs (Part 2): A Feasible Solution to Sustainable Industrial Development?

Susan Barclay, 1Namo Thambiran, 1Dhiraj Maharaj, 1Chris Buckley and 2David Mercer

Pollution Research Group, School of Chemical Engineering, University of Natal, Durban, 4041, South Africa 2 Enviros March, Salford Quays, Manchester, M5 2XW, United Kingdom

In the first of this two-part paper, the concept of waste minimisation clubs was introduced and their success in the United Kingdom briefly outlined. A background to the two clubs that have been established in the kwaZulu Natal region was given together with a description of the club members and the management of these clubs. This paper will present the results that have been achieved as of March 2000 by the club members and discuss the barriers that have been encountered during the course of this project.

The Metal Finishing Waste Minimisation Club
This club was established in June 1998 with 29 companies signing up as members. Of these, 15 attend meetings regularly and have implemented waste minimisation programmes at their factories. The financial savings achieved by 13 members have been quantified and will be reported here. The remaining members have yet to quantify their results. As of March 2000, the club has saved approximately R 1.9 million / year in water, chemicals, energy, and effluent. Total annual savings for each club member are shown in Figure 1. A profile of these club members is given in Table 1.









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Figure 1: Total annual savings achieved by 13 Club members


Table 1: Profile of the 13 of the metal finishing club members Company Company Number of Number Description Employees 1 Jobbing Shop 10 2 Manufacturer 800 3 Jobbing Shop 10 4 Manufacturer 80 5 Manufacturer 26 6 Manufacturer 190 7 Manufacturer 350 8 Jobbing Shop 30 9 Jobbing Shop 70 10 Jobbing Shop 50 11 Jobbing Shop 9 12 Jobbing Shop 37 13 Jobbing Shop 14 Savings in Water Savings in the region of R 160 000 /annum in water has been achieved by the Metal Finishing Club. This translates to 57 000 kl / year of both potable water and effluent production. Measures that were introduced to reduce water use include: • Fixing of leaks and shutting off unnecessary taps • Monitoring water use and investigating variances • Introduction of cascading rinses • Reuse of rinse waters • Worker education • Optimising water flow into tanks • Recycling of water from one process to another • Setting targets The majority of these options were implemented at little or no cost with payback periods of months. Only one company had a large capital outlay where a filter press was purchased to remove solids from the effluent of a process and recycle the water back to the same process. This investment has a payback of approximately 18 months. This emphasises the importance of housekeeping and monitoring utility use. Energy Savings A total of approximately R 280 000 / annum in energy has been saved by the club members. This was achieved through: • Power factor correction • Monitoring of electricity use and investigating variances • Placing timers on heated baths • Scheduling of work such that ovens operated for as short a period as possible • Undertaking a survey of all heat using processes in the plant and identifying areas for improvement • Replacement of compressed air with fan air for plating bath agitation These savings are due to a decrease in electrical energy, as steam is not utilised by these companies.

3 Chemical Savings As can be seen from Figure 1, one company has made significant savings. This is mostly due to reducing chemical, metal, oil and solvent costs. Waste minimisation options that were introduced include: • Improved housekeeping • Improved monitoring and control over addition of chemicals to baths • Increasing the drip time after articles were removed from the bath to allow the chemical to drip back into solution • Reuse of baths • Identifying alternative suppliers of chemicals to consolidate costs • Reducing volume of effluent requiring treatment thereby decreasing treatment chemical costs Decreasing chemical and metal consumption leads to a lower concentration in the effluent, resulting in reduced treatment costs and compliance with regulations. Environmental Benefits Along side the financial gains to the companies, there has been a reduction in the environmental impact of the club members. Quantification of these savings is problematic but underway. Known benefits have included: water use (both municipal and borehole) effluent discharged to sewer volumes of sludge disposed of to landfill metal concentration to drain cyanide usage cadmium usage solvent use and emissions general chemical discharged to drain a reduction in the use of electricity, and therefore global CO2 emissions

The Hammarsdale Club
Having been established for 18 months, the Hammarsdale club members are showing significant savings in water, raw materials and energy. Over 80 options have been identified in the club by both the project team and the companies themselves. Of these, at least 10 have been implemented. In total, savings in excess of R 4.4 million / year have been achieved and a further savings of R 14 million / year have been identified. These are represented graphically in Figures 2 and 3 respectively. A profile of these members is given in Table 2.



RANDS / ANNUM (x 1000)

RANDS / ANNUM (x 1000)













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Figure 2: Reported annual savings (achieved) for Hammarsdale Club

Figure 3: Reported potential annual savings for the Hammarsdale Club

4 Table 2: Profile of Hammarsdale Club Members Company Company Number of Number Description Employees 1 Chemical 50 2 Textile 544 3 Textile 510 4 Textile 428 5 Textile 140 6 Food 800 7 Textile 500 8 Textile 120 It must be noted that Company 1 has made significant savings and identified a number of areas for improvement, but have not as yet reported these results. This explains the lack of data in Figure 1. In some of the other club members, potential savings have been identified, but could not be quantified as yet. Savings in Water An overall saving in water of R 1.5 million / annum has so far been reported by the club. This represents 300 000 kl / year. Measures that were introduced to reduce water use included: • Fixing of leaks and shutting off unused lines • Monitoring water use and investigating variances • Installation of new equipment (payback periods of less than 2 years) • Reuse of rinse waters • Increase in condensate return Savings in Energy Savings in energy have been reported by several of the club members. Although not all reported savings have yet been quantified, the known savings exceed R 400 000 / annum. Options that have been implemented to achieve this include: • Fixing of steam leaks and shutting off unused pipes • Repairing of lagging and insulation • Overhauling boilers and replacement of inefficient boilers • Increasing condensate return • Power factor correction • Replacement of inefficient pumps Savings in Raw Materials Raw material consumption has been reduced in one of the 8 companies. This was achieved through improved housekeeping methods. Savings of approximately R 1 million / year has been achieved. Savings in Consumables One of the textile club members has managed to save in the region of R 200 000 / annum through replacement of disposable cones with recyclable ones. These have the additional advantage of improving production, as there are fewer breakages. Other Savings A second textile company, through optimisation of steam controls and of the dyeing processes has reduced the number of redyes by 5%. This results in a decrease not only in the consumption of dyes, but also chemicals, water and energy. This has resulted in a combined savings of approximately R 1.2 million / year.

5 Environmental Savings By actively reducing waste at source, the Club Members are also reducing their impact on the environment. By reducing water consumption, the volume of effluent that is discharged to sewer is also decreased. Improving the efficiency of steam systems and reducing site power consumption both result in significant reductions in greenhouse gas emmissions. Use of recyclable packaging or consumables, monitoring and controlling raw material use and decreasing wastage during manufacture results in less solid waste requiring disposal to landfill. Monitoring and optimising dye and chemical usage will result in less being discharged to sewer and reduces the demand on the sewage works. Salt and dye are of major concern in the Hammarsdale region as they pass through the sewage works and enter the Sterkspruit River, which leads to the Shongweni Dam (a recreational area). Any measures that are introduced to reduce their use at source will be beneficial to the immediate environment.

Barriers to Implementing Waste Minimisation
In both the Metal Finishing and Hammarsdale Clubs, a number of barriers to implementing waste minimisation exist. The main ones are: A lack of time - time to undertake audits, identify options, implement and monitor the results; A lack of resources - there is no single person dedicated to waste minimisation - each person has a number of responsibilities and waste minimisation tends to be low on the list of priorities A lack of finance - there is a lack of financial resources for club members to implement more capital intensive changes. Solutions to overcoming these problems lie within the companies themselves. There must be commitment to waste minimisation from top management, such that the Project Champion and Project Team are allocated the time and resources to devote to the programme. This commitment can only be obtained by ensuring that management understands the benefits of waste minimisation to the company, in terms of financial gains and pollution liability. The Club has attempted to assist in overcoming these barriers through training, dissemination of success stories and social interactions between club members.

The results of this project have proven that the concept of waste minimisation clubs is a feasible approach to promoting waste minimisation in South African industries. Water, chemical and energy use has been reduced, thereby lowering the impact on the environment. All companies involved have a greater understanding of the concepts of cleaner production and waste minimisation, even if not all have implemented programmes on site. Those that have actively participated have shown remarkable results as is evident from the financial savings reported.

The funding of the South African Water Research Commission and the European Union Directorate General XVII for Energy (Thermie) is gratefully acknowledged. The co-operation and participation of the club members is also greatly appreciated.

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Description: Waste Mnimisation Clubs – Part II