Clinical wastes to municipale W2E facility?

The Isle of Man is a popular and busy island with a large and well-equipped central hospital and many other small sites of arising for clinical and related wastes. Where does it all go?

Some small fraction is shipped off the Island for specialist incineration, this being mainly pharma and cytotoxic wastes. The remainder was being incinerated in a small incinerator located on the site of a large and efficient W2E facility receiving municipal and selected agricultural wastes.

The clinical waste incinerator can’t cope. It is inefficient to operate it continuously so there are considerable commercial, practical and environmental factors to consider, and difficulties caused by repeated start-up and cool-down cycles. When it is operating it meets emission control limits but the diversity and lack of feedstock creates problems from discontinuous use. Overall, the facility is unduly costly, difficult to operate effectively, and inefficient.

Proposals to move low-risk clinical (healthcare and/or offensive/sanitary) wastes to be fast-tracked to the W2E facility are coming to fruition.

Operators of the W2E plant have applied for a temporary licence to burn clinical waste in the main incinerator. There are questions that the plant’s second incinerator – which is currently used for burning clinical waste – is working and helping to generate electricity. But plant operators SITA Isle of Man says it needs to be shut down for maintenance and they’ve applied to use the main incinerator instead for burning hospital waste.

The secondary incinerator was designed to process up to 5,000 tonnes of clinical, animal and oil waste. It struggles.

We cannot give too much detail of the existing arrangements or plans for future configurations of waste management of the island since Blenkharn Environmental had a central role in resource identification and planning, and in the identification of future disposal options.

The plans make best use of the most efficient and environmentally sound waste treatment resources, to provide an effective solution to the Island’s needs and self-sufficiency.



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