Exchanging by-products to improve resource efficiency

Using by-products and waste streams as raw materials for new production processes has become a successful strategy for improving resource efficiency, and the concept of chemical parks or industrial clusters where by-products and waste could be exchanged between companies is becoming mainstream.

Five clusters comprising of various industrial plants have recently been analysed as part of the EU-funded EPOS project which aims to explore their potential for industrial symbiosis and more efficient exchange of raw materials and by-products.

The most advanced example of cross-sectorial symbiosis opportunities in EPOS can be found in Hull, UK, where CEMEX, a cement company, could use liquid waste from INEOS, a petrochemicals company. It could also take chalk reject material from OMYA, a producer of industrial minerals and return its cement kiln dust to OMYA’s quarry.

Associated SDG targets

UN SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
SDG 12-ResponsibleConsumptionAndProduction
SDG 17-PartnershipsForTheGoals