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Home » Fuel Blending and Solvent Disposal: Alternatives to Waste Incineration

Fuel Blending and Solvent Disposal: Alternatives to Waste Incineration

Hazardous waste incinerator facilities have become incredibly sought after, with most prospectives having to wait for months before their materials can be accepted and approved. Some reports suggest that customers may have to wait up to 90 days from the initial query date before they can use the services of an incinerator.

The time restrictions set by the RCRA for hazardous waste storage onsite can be difficult for hazardous waste generators to abide by, as incinerator facilities are in high demand and backlogged for several months. This post will explore fuel blending as an alternative to incineration, including questions and answers that could help individuals who cannot access an incinerator.

Hazardous Waste Disposal & Recycling

Reducing the need for incineration is possible through other disposal and recycling methods, as some hazardous waste components can be reused and repurposed.

Recycling hazardous waste components can be an effective way to reduce the need for incineration. For example, a post-manufacture cleaning process that uses acetone produces hazardous waste containing spent acetone and solutes such as electroplating residues like chrome or cadmium. Distillation can be used to recover the acetone and reuse it for the same process, or something similar, resulting in energy recovery and less reliance on incinerators.

What is Fuel Blending

Fuel blending is an alternative to incineration that combines different fuels to create a more efficient and sustainable fuel source. By combining, for example, oil, gasoline and diesel, or produced gas streams, blended fuel can be tailored to reduce emissions while at the same time increase efficiency. As such, it is becoming increasingly popular among businesses and industries as a way of reducing their environmental impact while still providing sufficient power. Furthermore, fuel blending can also provide significant savings in terms of energy costs, since it requires less processing than other methods of producing liquid fuels. In addition to these benefits, fuel blending can also provide greater flexibility in terms of the type of fuels used and ensure higher quality results due to its ability to use a range of different ingredients. All of which make fuel blending an attractive alternative for companies seeking to reduce their reliance on incineration.

What is Solvent Disposal

Solvent disposal is an alternative to waste incineration that involves the controlled removal of solvents and other volatile organic compounds (VOCs). This method of hazardous waste management facilitates safe disposal and eliminates material-handling costs associated with incineration. Furthermore, solvent disposal offers a more environmentally friendly solution as it does not produce emissions or generate large amounts of liquid waste. Solvent disposal solutions often employ chemical treatments like adsorption and distillation to remove VOCs from the affected area. Adsorption involves passing air over a bed of activated carbon or zeolite which captures the VOC molecules in its surface, while distillation removes the compounds by vaporizing them and condensing the vapors into separate containers for further processing and/or disposal. Finally, solvent disposal can also reduce hazardous materials handling costs due to a much lower required temperature than incineration. All these factors make solvent disposal an attractive option for businesses seeking an environmentally responsible alternative to waste incineration.

Types of solvents that can be recycled:

  • Alcohols such as isopropyl alcohol, ethyl alcohol and methyl alcohol
  • Acetone
  • Benzene
  • Chlorinated solvents such as trichloroethylene, perchloroethylene, and chlorobenzene
  • Ethers such as diethyl ether and dimethyl ether
  • Heptane and hexane
  • Hydrocarbons such as gasoline, kerosene, and diesel fuel
  • Ketones such as methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) and acetone
  • Naphthas like mineral spirits or Stoddard solvent
  • Toluene

In Summary

Recycling and fuel-blending are viable alternatives to incineration for many businesses and industries. These methods of waste management can help reduce emissions, increase efficiency, and provide significant savings in terms of energy costs. Still, it is important to keep in mind that capital costs related to hazmat management, pickup, transit, and distilling as well as regulatory requirements must be considered when deciding which method to use. Additionally, fuel blending provides greater flexibility in terms of the type of fuel used and offers higher-quality results due to its ability to use a range of different ingredients. Taking into account all these factors can help ensure an informed decision that helps companies reduce their reliance on incineration while still meeting their environmental goals. Request a hazardous waste management quote today.