SEPTEMBER 2008

Veolia Environmental Services to recover ethanol from waste

Veolia ES Technical Solutions, LLC, the hazardous waste division of Veolia Environmental Services, is beginning ethanol recovery services at its newly acquired Medina, Ohio facility.

Waste materials from industrial manufacturing and consumer goods that contain ethanol will undergo a process to recover it for reuse. Veolia ES Technical Solutions will also provide secure packing destruction for off-specification alcoholic beverages in conjunction with the ethanol recovery process. The recovered ethanol can then be used as fuel to replace or supplement gasoline.

“This is yet another step in our growing list of recycling technologies that include organic and inorganic processes to recover mercury, metals, and solvents,” explained Philippe Martin, president and CEO of Veolia ES Technical Solutions.

The operation will support ethanol production from industrial, non-alcoholic and alcoholic wastes. Waste products are sent through equipment that destroys or recycles the packaging and separates out the liquids. These liquids are transferred to a recovery process that removes most water and contaminants. The final ethanol product is then subject to a rigorous specifications review, and when met, will be sold as fuel.

Veolia ES Technical Solutions process is relatively new in the area of recovering and producing ethanol. “Most ethanol plants in the United States use food products, mainly corn, to produce ethanol, but very little has been done in the area of recovering ethanol from waste,” said Martin.

Industries that will benefit from Veolia ES Technical Solutions waste-to-ethanol service include food and beverage distributors, especially breweries and wineries, biotechnology, pharmaceutical, chemical and consumer goods manufacturers.