the organic causes problems on the landfills.
A typical landfill heap in Morocco can retain something 20 to 25% water content (calculated from characteristics estimates of the waste and the leachate release rate). The rest of the water that is being buried with the waste, roughly the same amount or more, will leak off due to gravity and pressure from the hundreds of thousands of tons of waste stacked on top. This water is called leachate.
On the leachate’s passing through the landfilled, it extracts soluble or suspended solid organic and non-organic matter; none by itself is toxic in the beginning. However, inside the landfill, the oxygen is consumed quickly creating an anoxic environment. As the pH value drops the acids dissolve anything: metals, cement, salts, batteries, prints on paper and plastics. The resulting effluent, the leachate, is a heavily odorous black and cloudy liquid.
Leachate is known for very high BOD5 and COD levels, sometimes as high as 60,000mg/l and 80,000mg/l respectively.
Leachate will not disappear. Some reduces itself in summer through natural evaporation in the basins.
In Morocco organic waste contains around 70% water. Municipal Solid Waste in Morocco has an organic content of more than 70%; that means we landfill 49% water (@ 70%, 70%).
This means we produce 200-300 liters of leachate for every ton of municipal solid waste that is put on the landfill, precipitation/evaporation not counted. Leachate runoff is stored in very large basins, and these take up most of the landfill space.
The stock of leachate keeps growing as the volume of the landfill grows. When the ponds that keep the leachate fill up to the limit, costly treatment methods need to be applied, which may amount to major engineering challenges that encompasses a variety or all of the methods:
- biological treatment,
- physical/chemical treatment,
- technologies such as reverse osmosis (RO),
- or forced evaporation,
Some treatment methods are lengthy, certainly costly, and to be applied repeatedly. There is no magic that does away with leachate!
one solution for leachate. don’t landfill organic waste.
generizon does not treat existing/old leachate.
But, generizon shows a way of how not to prevent production of new leachate.
A relatively small effort upstream in the waste-cycle has huge benefits downstream: The steps to follow are logical. simple. generizon.
- waste separation at the source,
- start with grand producers. markets. supermarkets. slaughterhouses. fish and other food industry. restaurants and hotels,
- channel organic waste to an anaerobic digester. generizon’s waste2energy project,
- no leachate production because no land-filling,
- consequently no leachate treatment costs.
up to 50% leachate reduction for a city with 1000t/day of solid waste.
This applies to Agadir, Fes, Tanger and Marrakech. All of the four have around 1000t/day municipal solid waste MSW, with the aforementioned characteristics, 70% organics with 70% water content.
What if we manage to divert 20% of the wettest and most problematic organic waste streams away from the landfills into anaerobic digestion facilities, generizon’s waste2energy project.
- like hotel, restaurant, canteen and other kitchen waste,
- like slaughterhouse waste, chicken and red meet waste,
- like vegetable, fruit, fish and poultry market and wholesale market waste,
- like return and expired food stuff from supermarkets,
- like confiscated food stuff,
- like agro-industry waste, from fish, dairy, canning, juice production facilities.
If we divert 20%, that is 200 tons/day, we reduce leachate production by up to 50%!
Let’s assume we go in phases, as generizon’s solution is modular. Let’s start with 5%, 50 tons/day, that reduces leachate production on landfills by 11-12%/year. Still nice, and clean and 100% sustainable.