Russian aluminium behemoth U.C. Rusal said yesterday that it has processed and sold approximately half of the waste product generated by its various smelters over the past decade, along with processing about a tenth of the red and nepheline mud at its alumina refineries over that same time period.
According to the firm, it has made a steady effort at continuously increasing the share of waste processed at its operations as well as marketing other types of waste material as raw materials for other industries. Going forward, Rusal will continue to work towards selling 100 percent of its waste materials to other industries by entering into cooperative agreements and other such partnerships with firms both domestic and international.
Rusal is continuing to develop technology aimed at repurposing waste product, especially red mud generated from the alumina refining process. Rusal made great progress on such technology last year, and it says it expects even more improvements in the months and years to come.
In addition, Rusal has made significant progress on finding beneficial use for spent coal potlining. Last year saw the firm process 60 percent of its spent coal potlining, good for a 20-percent increase in potlining recycling over 2009.
“Reducing the volume of waste, limiting waste generation, increasing processing and recycling are all key elements of the Company’s strategy to boost its sustainability efforts and reduce its impact on the environment,” explained Rusal’s Technical Director Victor Mann. “For example, Rusal’s Sayanogorsk industrial site already processes or sells over 90% of waste produced. The ongoing development and implementation of new technologies, which are now in the final stages of testing, as well as the modernization of our production facilities will allow to set such ultimate tasks to other facilities of the Company.”