Soil treatment sector expands

Waste company Augean has opened the UK’s largest soil treatment plant at its Port Clarence landfill near Middlesbrough.

The plant, a joint venture with the Belgian firm DEC NV, can treat up to 150,000 tonnes of contaminated soil per year. Contaminated soils have not been able to go to landfill since waste acceptance criteria were introduced by the landfill Directive in 2005 (ENDS Report 366, pp 20-24 ).

The plant will treat soils by physico-chemical methods. It will separate out the fine fraction, using screens and hydrocyclones, to which contaminants adhere. This will then be treated chemically to produce a filter cake suitable for landfill. The plant can also treat hydrocarbon-contaminated soils by bioremediation.

The clean soil produced will be used as landfill cover, however, Augean hopes it will be reused by the construction industry in the long term.

  • Biffa has announced it is to open its second soil treatment plant at its Colnbrook landfill near Slough.

    The plant, a joint venture with Biogenie Site Remediation, will operate on the same basis as its plant at Risley (ENDS Report 370, p 16 ). Up to 50,000 tonnes of hydrocarbon-contaminated soils will be treated each year in bio-piles.

    Construction is to begin in June, with the plant expected to be in operation in September.

    Biffa and Biogenie have already made a planning application for a third facility "near London", according to Graham Holtom, Biogenie’s general manager.

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