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[24 NOV 98] COVENTRY UNIVERSITY PRESS RELEASE
Researchers Use Waste To Reduce Pollution

Researchers at Coventry University and Imperial College, London, are looking at a new way of lining landfill waste disposal sites that should not only last longer than present solutions, but be cheaper and better for the environment - by making use of waste itself.

Dr Claisse, of Coventry University’s School of The Built Environment, explains the idea behind the project.

"By law all new landfill sites now have to be lined, to prevent seepage of waste and pollutants into the soil. At the moment this is done by using high density plastic membranes combined with either natural clay or a clay called Bentonite, mostly imported from China.

"Our project aims to produce an effective and longer-lasting concrete type barrier, made from re-cycled construction materials, and blast furnace and foundry waste ", adds Dr Claisse.

"This new system potentially has great cost savings as the material that will be used to form the barrier currently costs 25 per tonne to dispose of. There are 250 hectares of new landfill barrier laid in the UK each year. We estimate that our system will represent a saving of around 10 per square metre compared to the present method. This amounts to a 100,000 per hectare saving, adding up to around 25 million per year in potential cost savings across the UK", said Dr Claisse.

Dr Claisse and Research Fellow Esmail Ganjian will be working with Professor Alan Atkinson and Dr Mark Tyrer from Imperial College, on the 370,000 project in co-operation with UK Waste Management Ltd and the Minerals Industry Research Organisation (MIRO).

Around 300,000 of the funding for the project comes from the Government’s recently introduced Landfill Tax Credit Scheme which allows tax levied from the deposit of waste to be channelled into environmental protection initiatives. The balance is being provided by industrial partners through MIRO.

"This is potentially a very exciting development in terms of the reduction of pollution from landfill sites. Our new material will be even more durable than present solutions - while being cheaper, greener and making us less reliant on imported Bentonite ", concludes Dr Claisse.

MORE INFORMATION:
Cyrrhian Macrae or Floyd Jebson 01203 838352

 

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CWN / Education / Universities / Coventry University / 24 Nov 98

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