Invalor 101 - A network for joint valorization of material flows in tourist areas

Acronym

Invalor 101
Priority axis Environment
Specific Objective Sustainable Territories
Call 1st Call for Project Proposals
Lead Partner University of Patras, Department of Chemical Engineering
Partners Frederick Research Center
Municipality of Markopoulo
Municipality of Paralimni
Municipality of Vlora
Polytechnic University of Tirana
Observer Partners Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
Budget 800.250,07
Increasing the level of recycling for particular waste-streams poses a significant challenge for highly touristic areas, owing to: (a) the seasonal peak, which demands large and cost-inefficient collection-treatment systems; and (b) to the low value that markets offer for secondary raw materials.

Invalor 101 ambition is to create a network of touristic areas that will explore ways of collaborating in joint glass waste management actions before and after the end of the Project. We will utilise the expertise of our academic partners in Greece, Cyprus and Albania, along with the Observer Partner (Catholic University of Leuven), to achieve the transfer of glass up-cycling technology and construct a Pilot Unit for Municipal partners.

The Pilot Unit will valorize glass waste to produce building products, through geo-polymerization techniques, thus enhancing recycling of this waste stream. The Pilot Unit will be a mobile infrastructure shared by the members of the network, i.e. a small container-size unit that will be easily and cheaply transferred from one partner to another and treat peak waste in off-season periods. Thus we will avoid over-designing and at the same time we will create employment opportunities in low seasons. A specialized Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) and Sustainability Plan will define the conditions under which the network will operate efficiently and attract more members.

The advantages and added-value of this approach are plenty:
(i) Innovation: No such technology (geo-polymerization) has been used on municipal waste (only for industrial);
(ii) Waste upcycling: We will produce only marketable or usable products, avoiding the market burden for secondary raw materials;
(iii) Transnational character: We can only do it within a transnational setting, since we need to combine know-how from Greece, Belgium, Cyprus & Albania and we need a network of partners to prove that upcycling can be cost efficient only by sharing infrastructure and jointly manage waste streams.
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