Recovery and disposal of non-hazardous waste
SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT takes charge of the sorting, bundling, treatment, recovery and disposal of the non-hazardous waste collected from households and businesses.
Recovering resources from non-hazardous waste
Once the waste has been collected and sorted, SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT recovers resources from non-hazardous waste through various processes.
- Materials recovery covers the recovery, reuse, regeneration and recycling of materials from waste. The Group has set up innovative facilities to handle certain complex wastes (planes, electrical and electronic equipment, end-of-life vehicles) and produce recycled raw materials.
- Energy recovery consists in recovering the calorific value of waste and transforming it into energy and/or heat. These operations mainly consist of the incineration of industrial and household waste, as well as the preparation of alternative fuels and methanisation. This last process consists in transforming biodegradable waste into biogas, which is then used to produce electricity and/or heat.
- Agronomy recovery consists in transforming green waste and the biodegradable part of household waste into compost. The compost is then used as fertilizer in agriculture and gardening. The Group subsidiary Terralys thus offers its customers (individuals, agricultural cooperatives and garden centres) a comprehensive range of organic fertilizers stemming from these processes, to increase soil fertility without having to use chemical fertilizers.
Safe disposal of the non-recyclable part of the waste
After sorting, pre-treatment and extraction of all resources from the waste, SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT handles the disposal of residual non-hazardous waste. To this effect, the Group uses two main solutions: incineration and storage.
Incineration consists in burning the household and industrial waste. The energy released by their combustion is then recovered in the form of steam in order to produce electricity. For example, “Créteil Incinération Energie“, a waste processing and energy recovery centre managed by SITA France, has an authorised waste treatment capacity of 225,000 metric tonnes per year. The energy recovered provides lighting for 150,000 people and heating for 25,000 people.
Moreover, storage is a complex technology which enables the gradual fermentation of the waste. The biogas naturally generated by this operation is recovered and used to produce heat or electricity within non-hazardous waste (NHW) storage facilities or “class-2″ technical landfill sites. For example, in England, the Beacon Hill landfill site generates enough energy to light and heat the equivalent of 3,600 households per year.