A six-month glass collection pilot project coordinated by Recycle Colorado will increase the collection of glass bottles in downtown Denver. The project provides 96-gallon recycling carts to participating businesses and arranges for glass collection services through May 2019. Businesses can participate for free.
Breaking down the factors behind scrap glass prices
Q&A with Machinex' Pierre-André Mongeon
Recycling Product News recently had the opportunity to ask a series of questions about the factors behind scrap glass market prices, and the nature of scrap glass as a recycled commodity, to Pierre-André Mongeon, Machinex's glass recycling solution specialist and an active member of the Glass Recycling Coalition (GRC).
Recycling Product News (RPN): What are major factors that affect market prices of scrap glass?
Pierre-André Mongeon (PAM): Demand and quality would be the two major factors. Demand remains fairly high for clean cullet (reclaimed ground glass) and fine-grind glass for insulation and sandblasting. Glass manufacturers are usually eager to find clean cullet, since they are using only about 33 percent recycled glass, and they could potentially be using up to 95 percent.
Contamination levels of glass are a main factor affecting its price. At 80 percent of purity, glass can sell at a negative $35-$50/metric tonne (mt) as landfill cover. At 95 percent purity, some markets can be found for $0-$10/mt. Further treated glass, with up to 99.8 percent purity, and fine grind, can find markets at $70-$100/mt. Colour-sorted and high-purity glass cullet can be sold at $60-$80 USD in Canada and the U.S. (taking into account variation in cost per tonne for hauling, from $5 to $20 per tonne, depending on distances.)
RPN: How has the transition toward single-stream programs affected overall quality of scrap glass?
PAM: In the movement toward single-stream, between 1997 and 2017, glass quality has been very affected by the commingled recycling stream.
With many single-stream collection systems, hauler trucks compact the commingled material, drop it on a concrete floor, and forklifts and loaders roll on it. To remove glass as early as possible in the stream, disk screens are used to break it and screen it out of the container line. As a result of this process, glass gets mixed with organics, ceramics, shredded paper and other small objects (less than 50 mm). Glass will be about 20-30 percent contaminated. So instead of having a revenue from glass, many MRFs have to pay to get rid of it (i.e., negative pricing.)
Back in the early 80s, we used a dual-stream system. We put paper and cardboard in one bin and containers and unbroken glass in another. Being source-separated, glass was easier to sort, and MRFs had a greater value for their "clean" glass.
Nowadays, most of us can recycle (about 90 percent of Canadians have access to recycling programs) and most use one bin (single-stream). Single-stream was implemented to save on hauling prices and decrease greenhouse gases. This method of collection, aiming for convenience and higher participation levels, however, has resulted in a more than 20 percent increase in tonnage collected, but a net decrease of over 12 percent in overall tons recycled.
RPN: How have markets for recycled glass changed over the long term in North America?
PAM: In 50 years, glass bottle manufacturing has dropped by about 50 percent, since PET and aluminium cans have taken a large part of the container market. Glass bottle weights are also about 40 percent less than they were.
Still, the use of cullet in the manufacture of glass has increased steadily from about 22 percent in 1988, to over 33 percent in 2012. In the 1970s "bottle bill" legislation passed by many U.S. states encouraged glass manufacturers to use cullet. The industry now fully understands that using cullet allows furnaces to operate at lower temperatures, which extends furnace life, reduces costs and lowers stack emissions. We also know that using glass cullet in the process of making new bottles will decrease energy requirements by three percent for every 10 percent of cullet used, and that recycled glass can be substituted for up to 95 percent of raw materials.
The natural resources used in glass manufacturing are sand, limestone and soda ash. Although these resources are abundant in North America, they are geographically separated by long distances, which leads to high transportation costs in procuring these raw materials. Thus, using recycled glass for manufacturing new glass helps conserve oil and gas.
In the U.S. today, 2.4 million tons of recycled glass are used annually to make new bottles and jars, and about 60 percent of all recycled glass is used for new containers or for a second life application.
RPN: Specifically, how has the glass container manufacturing industry changed in recent years?
PAM: As glass containers lost market shares to aluminum cans, PET, and other plastic materials over the last two decades, the glass container industry has consolidated and reduced capacity. Three companies - Owens-Brockway, Gallo Glass Company and Saint-Gobain Glass - supply about 90 percent of glass container demand in the U.S. (9.36 million tons, or 60.6 pounds per person, per year.) In 2010, there were approximately 25 million glass containers produced, with nearly 75 percent being beer bottles, and the remaining, mostly food containers.
It is notable that back in 1967, 40 container glass manufacturers produced glass from 112 plants in 27 U.S. states. Currently, 17 companies operate 54 facilities in 27 states.
RPN: What are other promising end markets for recycled glass in North America going forward?
PAM: Glass insulation facilities, sandblasting media and other growing markets are coming on strong lately.
Other secondary markets include road construction, either used on the surface, called "glassphalt", or as a road base aggregate. Recycled glass can also be used as filler aggregate in storm drain and French drain systems, in the fibreglass industry, as glass beads for reflective paints, and in abrasives, foam glass and other building materials.
Although not yet officially approved as a road base anywhere in Canada, some counties in the U.S. can find market at about $0/mt. But since sand remains cheap and widely used, it is still preferred in many cities.
In Plessisville, Quebec, where the head office of Machinex is located, and in Victoriaville and Montreal, glass powder is used in sidewalks. It allows, among other things, to increase concrete durability while reducing adverse environmental impacts.
VERROX is a notable cement additive product that has great market potential for recycled glass. It distinguishes itself by its pozzolanic properties, conferred by its high level of amorphous silicon dioxide (SiO2).
RPN: Are there better ways to recycle glass to add value for end markets?
PAM: Going forward, cleaning glass a little more (moving from 80 percent to 90 percent + purity) would be the cheapest way to improve markets.
It does not cost a lot to install a Machinex pre-cleaning system, and purity of over 90 percent is easily achievable. Machinex has recently developed, with its partner Krysteline, several advanced solutions to remove the contaminants in glass, to obtain a marketable product that can reach up to 99 percent.
Glass manufacturers will be more attracted by the cleaner glass and will see the benefits. So will recyclers. RPN
This article was originally published in Recycling Product News, Volume 25, Number 8, November/December 2017.
More from Glass Recycling
TOMRA Sorting Recycling has introduced AUTOSORT COLOR, a new machine which works in combination with AUTOSORT LASER to separate glass from municipal solid waste (MSW) with unprecedented effectiveness. Even though it is common to collect glass waste separately, a significant amount of recoverable glass remains mixed-in with MSW from households and businesses. AUTOSORT COLOR achieves purity rates greater than 95% at high throughput rates, even when input materials are wet, dusty or dirty.
According to a June blog post from Ontario-based CIF (Continuous Improvement Fund), which funds and supports blue box recycling projects and research in the province, the marketplace for municipal grade mixed broken glass is relatively thin. At the same time, quality specifications from end markets are becoming tighter, requiring added attention by MRF operators.
TerraCycle's efficient drum-top bulb crushing systems, the BulbEater3 and BulbEater3L, have received CE certification from the European Commission's Directorate-General (DG) for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs. Obtaining a Declaration of Conformity (DoC) is essential for the sale and distribution of a product in the European Economic Area and other regions. The BulbEater system had to meet the strict standards set forth by European Union Directive 2006/42/EC on Machinery to receive a DoC.
One year after completing their Dallas MRF, FCC Environmental is back with another contract for the city of Houston, Texas. FCC teamed up again with supplier Van Dyk Recycling Solutions to deliver a high-capacity system with the most advanced technology on the market. The previous collaboration between the two parties (the Dallas MRF) won the National Waste and Recycling Association's Recycling Facility of the Year Award in 2017.
As part of a worldwide effort to promote the importance of recycling on the first-ever Global Recycling Day this Sunday, March 18, the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) is calling on businesses, communities, policymakers, and individuals to increase their commitment to recycling and recognize scrap as an important resource. Recyclable materials are valuable commodities that play a pivotal role in environmental protection, energy conservation, and sustainability.
Pellenc ST and Sesotec GmbH recently concluded a new partnership to complement their market and product portfolio in the high-tech recyclables sorting sector. This agreement covers the distribution of flake sorting equipment for plastics recycling applications in France, Japan and the UK and sensor-based sorting equipment for End-of-Life Vehicles, Metal scrap and the WEEE-recycling markets in France and Japan. For other territories and other waste sorting applications, new opportunities will be treated on a case-by-case basis.
CDEnviro has recently appointed a new Business Development Manager for North America. Based in North Carolina, Alan Mitchell, will lead the team that is responsible for business development across the whole of the US and Canada.
In October, Veolia announced the expansion of its electronics and lamp recycling capabilities in Canada with the opening of a new, 5,000 square foot, state-of-the-art recycling facility located in Pickering, Ontario (Greater Toronto Area). While the plant's primary purpose is to provide lamp-recycling services for customers across Ontario and other Canadian provinces, other electronics and mercury-bearing wastes can also be handled for customers out of this facility as appropriate. Veolia currently also provides industrial cleaning and hazardous materials management services from this location.
Machinex completed a major modernization last month at the Récupération Mauricie sorting facility, located near Trois-Rivières, Quebec. The sorting system now has increased efficiency and higher quality sorted material.
(Washington, DC)- Registration is open for the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries' (ISRI) Annual Convention and Exposition. ISRI2018, the world's largest annual gathering of scrap recycling professionals, will be held April 14-19, at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. ISRI2018 is set to provide scrap recyclers from around the world with the educational and networking opportunities, product showcases, and industry news needed to maximize their time, dollars, and return on investment.
Beautiful St. Barthélemy in the French Caribbean hosts over 200,000 visitors every year. This creates a significant amount of used glass (mostly glass beverage containers) which needs to be managed. In July of 2017 St. Barthélemy followed the example of several nearby islands and installed an Andela Glass Pulverizer to transform dirty, bulky and expensive-to-ship glass bottle waste into clean reusable aggregate. Using the Andela GPT-1HD Glass Pulverizer System, St. Bart's can now process 3 to 5 tons per hour of glass bottle waste.
Plessisville, QC - The Executive Committee of Ville de Montreal has granted, on September 22nd, a contract to La Compagnie de recyclage de papiers MD Inc. This contract allows the design, construction, operation and maintenance of the new recycling plant located in Lachine. Machinex has been selected by La Compagnie de recyclage de papiers MD to provide this new system, projected to be fully operational in fall 2019.
Today's eddy current separator (ECS) technology is ideal for scrap recyclers, MRFs and other recycling facilities that want to automate recovery of nonferrous metals (after ferrous recovery) from MSW, sand, glass, dirt, CTD, electronic scrap, shredded automobiles and refuse.
Canadians generate a lot of waste. On average, every Canadian will generate 720 kg (1,587 lbs.) of waste that goes to landfill, which is equal weight to a full grown female giraffe. In the spirit of Waste Reduction Week in Canada here are ten easy take-action tips that will reduce our reliance on landfills and help you adopt more environmentally conscious choices.
Éco Entreprises Québec (EEQ) recently announced they will provide Ville de Montréal with a complete leading-edge glass sorting and cleaning system, as part of the construction of a new sorting centre in Lachine. This three million dollar investment will contribute to the optimization and performance of selective collection in the region.
TOMRA Sorting Recycling has announced the launch of a sensor-based sorting machine based on laser technology. AUTOSORT LASER enables the separation of glass, ceramics, stones, metals and plastics from household and commercial waste. Its capabilities allow material recovery facilities (MRFs) to further fractionalize waste and reduce overall weight for landfill, thereby significantly reducing landfill costs. Moreover, AUTOSORT LASER helps create additional revenue streams through the recovery of salable products.
TOMRA's reverse vending solutions for the collection of cans and bottles, has installed its 500th T-90 Reverse Vending Machine (RVM) at Meijer in Cadillac, Michigan. The store now has eight T-90s, providing its customers with fast, clean and efficient container redemption. "Having the 500th installation of our T-90 RVM within a year after the initial launch of the technology in the U.S. is a great accomplishment," said Debbie Hall, SVP Sales, TOMRA of North America, Inc. "This speaks to our advanced technology and demonstrates that fast and efficient RVMs are a necessity as consumer interest in sustainability and redemption continues to increase."
Nashville, TN - MSS, Inc., the optical sorter division of CP Group, has introduced MetalMiner, the next generation of induction-based true all-metal detectors. MSS has designed and built induction metal sorters for over 40 years, and this latest iteration was designed specifically to handle auto shredder residue (ASR), electronic scrap, plastic flake and glass cullet applications. One of the most relevant new technical features of the MetalMiner is the patent pending MapLine algorithm.
MINNEAPOLIS, MN (August 29, 2017) - Ninety-six percent of residents and consumers expect to be able to recycle glass, according a survey conducted by Glass Recycling Coalition's (GRC) of more than 250 public sector representatives, glass industry professionals, and material recovery facility (MRF) representatives. The glass recycling survey results, released today at the Resource Recycling Conference in Minneapolis, found that the top priorities among public sector respondents for recycling programs are fulfilling resident satisfaction, meeting sustainability goals, and reducing contamination.
Material recovery facilities are a particularly challenging environment when it comes to safety. There are workers, management and visitors on the floor, on ladders, on structural catwalks and on equipment. People are constantly interacting with a range of heavy-duty moving vehicles, including wheel loaders, forklifts and other material handlers, as well as machinery designed specifically to convey, separate, bale, crush, screen, shred and grind. All of this machinery, driven by electricity, hydraulics, motors or engines has the potential to be hazardous, as do the materials being handled - including everything from refrigerators and C&D materials to used needles, batteries and aerosol cans.
Penn Waste has announced plans to add technology and capacity to the company's 35-ton-per-hour (tph) Single Stream recycling system housed in the company's 96,000-square-foot Manchester, PA Materials Recovery Facility (MRF). Eugene, Oregon-based Bulk Handling Systems (BHS) designed, engineered, manufactured and installed the advanced processing line in 2015, and will provide the $3.5 million retrofit. Expected to be operational in August of this year, the new and improved system will increase throughput to more than 45 tph and improve material purity.
Éco Entreprises Québec (ÉEQ) has inaugurated an innovative glass processing equipment as part of the implementation of its Innovative Glass Works plan. The Quebec City Materials Recycling Facility (MRF), which is operated by Société VIA, is among the five centres to receive cutting-edge equipment to lead experimental pilot projects with the aim to find a solution for 100% of the glass collected through curbside recycling.
The US based Glass Recycling Coalition (GRC) has announced the release of an online decision-making tool to help recycling program managers evaluate or optimize their glass recycling programs. Developed with the help of GRC members and guidance from the GRC's Government Advisory Council, the decision-making tool is equipped with best practices, interactive data, contract considerations and more.
ZenRobotics Ltd. will deliver a robotic waste sorting system to Sunshine Groupe in Melbourne, Australia. The three-armed ZenRobotics Recycler unit (ZRR3) will be the first of it’s kind in Australia and it is expected to be fully operational in spring 2017.
The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) Board of Directors approved the addition of new specifications for glass and inbound mixed recyclables for material recovery facilities (MRF) during its Winter Meeting on February 10. As per ISRI’s Policy Manual, any party may submit to ISRI a written appeal of the ISRI Board’s approval of this new specification up to 30 days after publication of this notice. Written appeals must provide a rationale and a request for action and should be sent to ISRI President Robin Wiener.
National Recovery Technologies (NRT) has announced a new addition to the company’s product offering, the ColorPlus-R. Similar to the ColorPlus, the ColorPlus-R uses an advanced image processing system to detect materials based on color analysis and object recognition. Unique to the ColorPlus-R is the ability to color analyze opaque objects, such as black plastics.
Light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs last much longer and use less energy than fluorescent lights and are becoming a popular choice for holiday lighting, indoor lights and many other uses. Maria Holuszko, a University of B.C. (UBC) mineral processing engineer and her PhD student Amit Kumar have found a way to make LEDs even more environmentally friendly. They’ve evaluated a process that recovers valuable metals in LEDs and reduces the amount of waste that eventually ends up in landfills.
The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) Board of Directors will consider the addition of new specifications for glass and inbound mixed recyclables for material recovery facilities (MRF) during its Winter Meeting on February 10. ISRI’s Paper and Plastics Divisions recently approved each of the specifications, which are intended to increase understanding of the issues processors face when working with complex streams from municipal program sources.
Rumpke Recycling Dayton unveils $1 million renovation at one-of-kind mixed glass processing facility
This past America Recycles Day (November 15) and Rumpke Waste & Recycling Dayton celebrated by unveiling a $1 million renovation at one of the U.S.' only mixed glass recycling centers.
ÉEQ’s Innovative Glass Works Plan announces names of five sorting centres to test new glass processing equipment and technology
Éco Entreprises Québec (ÉEQ) has revealed the names of the five sorting centres selected to take part in pilot projects to test cutting-edge cleaning and sorting equipment for glass collected through curbside recycling in Québec, Canada. Under ÉEQ’s Innovative Glass Works Plan, a first in North America, the sorting centres will contribute to the search for a concrete solution for 100% of the glass collected through curbside recycling. In winter 2017, official inaugurations will be held in each sorting centre to mark the installation of the equipment, which represents a total investment of $4.1M US.
Operations are underway at the new Emerald Coast Utilities Authority (ECUA) Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in Pensacola, Florida, processing 25 tons-per-hour (tph) of Single Stream recyclables. Designed, manufactured and installed by Eugene, Oregon-based Bulk Handling Systems (BHS), the recycling system is expected to process 40,000 tons annually.
U.S. consumers in deposit states can already redeem their beverage containers for their deposit value, helping to ensure that those materials are recycled. Now, those consumers can earn even greater rewards for redeeming deposit containers, creating incentives that could potentially improve recycling rates across the country.
At IFAT 2016 in Munich, Germany, from May 30 to June 3, Austrian-based REDWAVE is showing various live sorting demonstrations featuring the innovative REDWAVE XRF sorting machine. This technology is ideal for use in the following applications:
Established in 1988, SARCAN Recycling (SARCAN) was formed as a division of SARC, a company that provides basic education, training and development for people with intellectual disabilities and their supporting agencies, with the primary goal of creating employment opportunities. With a head office in Saskatoon, SARCAN Recycling has over 650 employees and operates 71 recycling depots, as well as processing plants in Saskatoon and Regina. Persons with intellectual disabilities, or those previously on social assistance, make up approximately 70 percent of SARCAN’s workforce. The company’s depots accept primarily non-refillable, one-time-use beverage containers, but do also take standard refillable beer bottles, tin and aluminum cans, plastic containers, tetra and asceptic (polycoat) containers, juice cartons, milk and glass containers, as well as used paint cans and e-waste.
Machinex has allied with Krysteline Technologies for the introduction of their unique glass Implosion technology and associated equipment to the North American marketplace.
Survey Shows Canadian Manufacturers Used Over 136 Million Kilograms Of Recycled Materials in the Production of Fibre Glass, Rock and Slag Wool Insulation
The North American Insulation Manufacturers Association (NAIMA) has announced the results of a recent survey of its U.S. and Canadian members' use of pre- and post-consumer recycled materials in insulation and acoustical products for 2013. NAIMA Canada members used more than 136 million kilograms of recycled material in the production of their mineral fibre products.
Republic Services today dedicated the Conover Recycling Facility in Catawba County, which will introduce or expand single-stream recycling capabilities throughout Alamance, Catawba, Guildford, Montgomery, Richmond, and Stanly counties. The expanded, highly-advanced facility – designed, manufactured and installed by Bulk Handling Systems (BHS) – has the capacity to process more than 25 tons of mixed recyclables per hour, or 400 tons each day.
Granutech-Saturn Systems, a world-leading manufacturer of industrial and mobile shredders and other recycling equipment announced today it has developed and launched a new hybrid-drive mechanism option for its popular line of Saturn® industrial shredders, available on both new machines and as a retrofit kit for older machines in the field.