Germany

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Germany is an export-oriented nation with a strong manufacturing industry and well established eco-innovation areas and markets. Since 2013 the Germany’s performance in the Eco-innovation Scoreboard has dropped by one place and ranks fourth in 2014-2015. This is mainly attributed to a downshift in the socio-economic and resource efficiency outcomes. Germany performs particularly well in the subcategories eco-innovation patents and exports of products from eco-industries.

With respect to a circular economy, Germany is characterised by very good waste infrastructures and recycling rates. The present focus on technical waste management and end-of-life measures is simultaneously signalling further demand for innovative waste instruments at the interface of material cycles and new business models. A first step was taken by introducing the Waste Prevention Programme in 2013. A strengthening of the regulatory framework and a better alignment of responsibilities, competencies and approaches towards a circular economy seem important for the increase of secondary input rates and a closing of the loops. The demand for high-tech and waste technologies is expected to remain high in the world and–as one of the market leaders– Germany has a strong standing in exporting innovative waste management solutions.

The German green tech sector is expected to further develop dynamically. The early implementation of the Renewables Energies Act (in 1991) and the introduction of the German Resource Efficiency Programme (ProgRess) in 2012 serve as important and drivers for energy and resource efficiency, eco-innovation and the energy transition in Germany.

The framework conditions for innovation are generally well developed and include both supply and demand-side instruments while there is a pronounced reliance on voluntary and informational approaches at the consumption side. An eco-innovation action plan is under development. Nevertheless, Germany will probably not meet its sustainable development strategy targets for raw material and energy productivity, energy consumption, biodiversity, land use, mobility and farming .

2015 Eco-innovation Scoreboard ranking and eco-innovation index composites for Germany

Germany

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Mechanical-biological waste treatment (MBT)

Labels: GermanyWater supply

Mechanical biological waste treatment is applied on mixed organic/carbon rich waste with the aim to achieve  1) a stabilisation and minimisation of the risk potential together with a significant weight and volume reduction through biological decomposition which could count towards the diversion of biodegradable waste from landfill, and in conjunction therewith  2) the processing of the waste in order to generate separate material streams, recover recyclable materials and improve the suitability for subsequent treatment processes.

Barriers and Drivers
Barriers: MBT facilities should have access to the road and transportation network and be close to the places where the relevant wastes are generated or where process residuals will be deposited.
A minimum distance to the nearest residential area should be maintained to avoid any potential nuisances by odours, rodents or other unwanted vermine.
The waste for input has to be non-harzardous.

Drivers: The technology has strongly evolved during the past two decades. Today, there are over 100 plants operating in Europe using some form of mechanical biological treatment on residual wastes. Germany alone has about 50 plants operating above a capacity of 20.000 t/a

Social Performance
MBT offers good opportunities for the employment of both, unskilled and higher qualified personnel. For rather complex processes specially trained and qualified staff to take care for the facility management and operations control is needed.

Environmental Impact
Mechanical biological treatment comprises a combination of mechanical and biological processes that further treat mixed residual waste before disposal. Thus environmental impacts of deposited waste are minimised and further value from the waste through the recovery of recyclables and, in some cases, energy is gained.
- High-calorific coarse material (MBT) or combustible stabilate (MBS)
- Stabilised rotting material (MBT) or fine fraction (MBS) for landfilling
- Recyclable materials (mainly metals) - the quality of the metals recovered is higher and less contaminated than from the bottom of an incinerator

Further Information

http://www.retech-germany.net/english/topics/waste_management_made_in_germany/technologies/selected_technologies_municipal_waste_management/dok/697.php     

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