Waste products from the Group’s activities are disposed of at the locations that are most suitable depending on the type of material, or, when possible, are recycled. Recovery mainly concerns materials which can be:
- reused in construction, as in the case of gypsum and combustion ash;
- regenerated such as oils and batteries;
- recycled such as some types of metal, ash and gypsum.
The Group policies are oriented at continuously increasing over time the percentage of hazardous and non-hazardous waste sent for recycling.
In the second half of 2015, at the thermoelectric plant in Reftinskaya a dry ash removal system (DARS) was inaugurated and, for the first time in Russia, it enables the use of this waste product for other industrial purposes.
Thanks to the DARS it is now possible to store and send to customers, reducing the environmental impact through its disposal, up to 5 million tons of ash per annum, with a significant reduction in the water used.
The handling of ash as a product for the market is something the Group wants to extend where it has coal powered plants (Spain, Russia and South America).
Except for the ash produced in the Sulcis group 2 thermoelectric plant, all the ash produced in Italy is sold and recovered (1,404,779 tons of ash and 404,374 tons of gypsum in 2015). Around half is exported within Europe and to the United States.
In 2015 the Enel Group produced a total of 10,642,698 tons of waste, up by around 4% compared to 2014, of which 96% was classified as non-hazardous. The temporary increase in this figure is due to greater use of thermoelectric generation compared to hydroelectric for climatic reasons. 27.6% of the total waste produced in the whole scope of Enel was sent for recycling.
Enel, as part of its activities in the nuclear field, undertakes to minimize the production of waste from its daily activities, as well as future potential waste from decommissioning.
The trend in the quantities of radioactive waste produced depends on the maintenance work and operations to move fuel, and therefore can vary significantly from year to year. In particular, the specific production of solid high-level radioactive waste at nuclear power plants fell by 5.5% in 2015 compared to 2014.
For 2015 the total quantity of the most important spills was around 100 m3, which occurred mainly in Italy and was linked to grid construction and maintenance.
Waste produced (,000 t)