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Best LIFE-Environment Projects

European Commission

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European Commission
Environment Directorate-General

LIFE (“The Financial Instrument for the Environment”) is a programme launched by the European Commission and coordinated
by the Environment Directorate-General (LIFE Unit - BU-9 02/1).

The content of the publication “Best LIFE-Environment projects 2005-2006” does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the
institutions of the European Union.

Authors: Wendy Jones, Jon Eldridge, Stephen Gardner, Eric Sarvan (Astrale GEIE – AEIDL). Managing Editor: Philip Owen,
European Commission, Environment DG, LIFE Unit – BU-9, 02/1, 200 rue de la Loi, B-1049 Brussels. LIFE Focus series coor-
dination: Simon Goss (LIFE Communications Coordinator), Evelyne Jussiant (DG Environment Communications Coordinator).
The following people also worked on this issue: Katalin Kolosy, David Ferguson. Production: Monique Braem, Christine Charlier.
Graphic design: Anita Cortés, Daniel Renders. Acknowledgements: Thanks to all LIFE project beneficiaries who contributed
comments, photos and other useful material for this report. Photos: Unless otherwise specified; photos are from the respective
LIFE projects. This issue of LIFE Focus is published in English with a print-run of 3,000 copies and is also available online

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Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 3

Representatives of LIFE national authorities
from EU Member States at the Malmö meeting
in Sweden, April 2005

This is the second review of completed projects funded through the EU’s LIFE-Environment demonstration programme.
The objective was to find out which projects were the ‘Best of the Best’ (BoBs) of those projects that completed their
final reports before January 2006. This year, following an initial review carried out by the LIFE Unit’s external monitoring
team, Member States reviewed the top 21 of the 62 projects that finished within the reference period.

We used the same criteria as for the 2005 selection i.e., the LIFE national authorities used a set of criteria, agreed upon at a
meeting in the city of Malmö in Sweden (on 27-28 April 2005) to identify the best projects from an initial list prepared by the
external monitors. However, this year there were a few modifications made in response to comments by Member States last
year. The projects were distributed among evaluators on a random basis in a workable language for the national authority
and with only one review from the Member States where the project beneficiary was based.

Overall, the process ran much more smoothly than the first year’s selection process with colleagues responding promptly to
my many requests and queries. The results were encouraging: no projects were considered “below average” and although
only five projects could be included in the final, ‘Best of the Best’ (BoBs) selection, the margin separating fifth place from
eighth, was only 1.5%, which indicates just how close the decision was. I was also pleased to note that project managers
are increasingly aware of the ‘BoBs’.

We should not forget that the purpose of the evaluation exercise is to raise the profile of the work done through the
LIFE-Environment programme and help ensure that policy officers and SMEs are aware of important results which could
enhance their activities and benefit Europe’s environment. With the selection and management of projects in the new
LIFE+ Programme (2007-2013) likely to be moving from the Commission to Member States, I hope that the ‘BoBs’ can find
a new role bringing together the outputs from national programmes, and identifying and rewarding projects, whose results
are exceptionally significant at EU level.

For me this was also a sad occasion, as this was my last year coordinating the final selection process (I have moved to a
new post within Defra – the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs). From next year, the ‘BoBs’ will be coordi-
nated by Nicole Kerkhoff of SenterNovem, an agency of the Netherlands Ministry of Economics Affairs, to whom I offer my
best wishes.

I would like to express my gratitude to all my national authority colleagues who gave up valuable time. A special thank you
goes to: Isabelle Lico, Eleni Stylianopoulou, Ralf Tegeler, Gabriella Camarsa and Pascal Magoarou. Thanks also to the staff
from the LIFE Unit, the external monitors and to all the project beneficiaries.

Robbie Craig
UK LIFE Committee Member

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Introduction ..........................5 Water management........ 14 Waste management ....... 29

Dairy no water: Towards PAROC-WIM: Recycling
Land-use development self-sufficient dairy food waste boosts stone wool
and planning .................... 6 production ............................15 melting ................................. 30

SINESBIOAR: Sustainable ANPHOS: A new process GENPLAST: Integrated
development of the Sines for treating phosphate-rich recycling plant for
region, Portugal......................7 wastewater ...........................17 agricultural plastics ..............32

AIRforALL: Forecasting Bo n REUSEOIL: Reducing
extreme levels of local Bay: Managing hazardous waste by
ambient pollution ...................8 the common sea ..................18 recycling used oil filters........33

MicoValdorba: Sustainable ENVACTCARB: Producing
management of wild activated carbon from
fungus-producing forest Minimising the impact xylite (brown coal mining
ecosystems ............................9 of economic activities .... 19 sterile) ..................................34

Ythan Project: Community
approach helps to reduce RefinARS: Reducing
the environmental impact
pollution in Ythan estuary ....10 Integrated Product
of refineries ..........................20
EcoMonte: Environmental Policy ............................. 35
management in Austrian DETECTIVE: Dry-cleaning
Alps ......................................11 with liquid carbon dioxide ....22 ECON-tainer: new container
plant at the Port of
ECOREG: Regional eco- OSIS: Improving oil spill
Rotterdam ............................36
efficiency for sustainable detection in the North Sea ...25
development ........................12 CLEAN DECO: Green
Stiim: Traditional thermo
coatings for taps .................37
CER-COM+: Environmental techniques to treat cereal
measures boost local econ- seeds .......................................28 GPPnet: Networking to
omy in Northern Italy............13 promote green public
procurement .........................38

Available LIFE
publications ........................39
“Best of the Best” projects

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Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2004-2005 I p. 5

EU Member States represented on the LIFE Committee and the European Commission’s LIFE
Unit have announced the Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006. The results of the selection
(approved by the LIFE Committee on 15 May 2006), are the 21 projects featured in this publica-
tion. These projects represent the most successful of the recently completed LIFE-Environment
projects in terms of their contribution to immediate and long-term environmental, economic and
social improvements; their degree of innovation and transferability; their relevance to policy and
their cost-effectiveness.

The 21 best Environment’s main themes: land-use 2004. The system was introduced by
LIFE-Environment development and planning; water man- the Commission, following an initiative
projects 2005-2006 agement; minimising the impact of eco- taken by Sweden and the Netherlands.
Land-use development and planning nomic activities; waste management, After a meeting at The Hague on 11-
SINESBIOAR Portugal and Integrated Product Policy. 12 May 2004, a set of ‘best practice’
AIRforALL Romania criteria was developed in collabora-
MicoValdorba Spain The objective of the exercise is to help tion with the Member States. These
Ythan Project United Kingdom
improve the dissemination of LIFE criteria included: projects’ contribution
EcoMonte Austria
ECOREG Finland
project results by clearly identifying to immediate and long-term environ-
CER-COM+ Italy those projects whose results, if widely mental, economic and social improve-
applied, could have the most positive ments; their degree of innovation and
Water management impact on the environment. transferability; their relevance to policy
Dairy, no water The Netherlands and their cost-effectiveness. In view
ANPHOS The Netherlands
Commenting on the results of this of the importance of these aspects to
Bothnian Bay Finland
year’s selection process, LIFE Com- project success, project beneficiaries
Impact of economic activities mittee Member Robbie Craig (Depart- are also required to provide an After-
RefinARS Italy ment for Environment, Food and Rural LIFE Communication Plan and an
DETECTIVE The Netherlands Affairs, UK) said: “We offer our hearti- Analysis of the long-term benefits of
OSIS Denmark est congratulations to all the projects the project with their final report. This
Stiim Sweden
that were selected. We offer particular information forms an integral part of
congratulations to the five selected the evaluation process.
Waste management
‘Best of the Best’ (BoBs), who, in the
GENPLAST Spain opinion of the LIFE Committee, repre- All completed projects are initially
REUSEOIL Sweden sented the very best of this list.” technically assessed by the LIFE Unit’s
ENVACTCRB Romania external monitoring team (the Astrale
He noted that once again there was a consortium). The monitors ranked all
Integrated Product Policy
“very strong emphasis on eco-innova- the projects that ended during the ref-
ECON-tainer The Netherlands
tion” among the short-listed projects: erence period (autumn 2005 to spring
GPPnet Italy “Word about these awards is beginning 2006), to produce a first list. The final
“Best of the Best” projects
to spread. Throughout the EU, it seems selection was undertaken by the Mem-
beneficiaries of projects that are just ber States under the coordination of
This, the second Best LIFE-Environ- about to close are asking for more infor- Mr. Craig, using the agreed criteria.
ment Projects’ exercise, follows on from mation about the criteria for selection.”
a lengthy identification and evaluation This publication presents the 21 best
process based on a set of best prac- How were the best projects LIFE Environment projects 2005-2006,
tice criteria, developed by EU Member selected? including the five Best of the Best
States in collaboration with the Euro- projects selected by the LIFE Commit-
pean Commission. The projects, from Scoring of completed LIFE-Environ- tee. It includes the beneficiaries’ con-
across the EU-25, cover all of LIFE- ment projects began in the summer of tact details and website addresses.

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LIFE00 ENV/A/000249

Land-use development
and planning
The Commission’s new Thematic Strategy on the Urban Environment calls for

an integrated approach to environmental management, land-use and transport

planning at the local and regional level. To be sustainable, land-use planning and

development must harmonise a wide array of cross-cutting aims, ranging from

water, air and soil protection to the promotion of economic development; from

the conservation of natural habitats to the fulfillment of transport needs; and from

managing local climate-protection measures to reducing social segregation.

Entailing partly contradictory objectives, land-use planning processes are often

conflict-ridden. Sustainable land-use therefore requires integrated approaches,

which take into account the economic and social, as well as environmental con-

cerns of the numerous different stakeholders involved.

Thematic Strategy on Urban Environment (adopted on 11 January 2006).

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Land-use development and planning Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 7

SINESBIOAR: Sustainable develop-
ment of the Sines region, Portugal
The SINESBIOAR project implemented a multidisciplinary tool to manage air pollution and the
impact of social pressures on an industrial area of the Portuguese south coast.

tributed to air pollution, however, Borealis, CPPE, Tránsgas, Atlântico e
emitting sulphur dioxide, nitrous administração do Porto de Sines.
oxide and volatile organic com-
pounds into the atmosphere. Another key to the project’s success
was its multidisciplinary approach:
The LIFE-supported project was set lichens that can accumulate several
up in response to local demand for pollutants were used as bio-moni-
an improvement in air quality and the tors, social problems were monitored
opportunity presented by the sur- and geostatistical models of pollut-
rounding parks and coastal areas for ant dispersion were developed. This
eco-tourism. It recognised the urgent approach resulted in reliable and
need for a monitoring tool that would detailed monitoring and management
take various types of data, such as of air quality.
Beaches on the nearby coast provide
emissions, traditional air-quality indi-
an excellent opening for eco-tourism.
cators, bio-indicators and informa- The project has a positive legacy:
tion about land-use and climate, and trained personnel continue the moni-
Identifying and evaluating an area’s provide the local authority with useful toring work, and an active website
air pollutants is an important step guidelines for sustainable develop- and ongoing newspaper slot are part
towards managing the quality of air. ment and land use. of the project’s aim to address public
Industrial activity in the Sines region of concerns and include the local popu-
the Alentejo is located in clusters, and The end result was a web-based lation in sustainable land use.
as a result it is difficult to determine system that provides relevant and
the exact source of air pollution. up-to-date information to the public,
industry and managers. The CCDR-
The project was set up to enable the Alentejo is responsible for keeping the
Commission for Regional Coordina- system up and running, and monitor- Project Number:
tion and Development of the Alentejo ing facilities are a permanent fixture LIFE00 ENV/P/000830
region (CCDR-Alentejo) to better eval- of the area.
Title: Implementation of a multidisci-
uate the air quality of the Sines region.
plinary tool for the evaluation…
It provides a wide range of environ- A broad approach of air quality.
mental data that allows the CCDR-
Alentejo to implement a programme Organisers attribute a good deal
CCDR Alentejo, Portugal
of sustainable industrial development of the success of the project to the
and environmental management. involvement of private companies, Total Budget: E1,282,000
public bodies and research institutes. LIFE Contribution: E622,000
Since the 1960s the Sines area of The project was supported by the
Period: 01-Dec-2001 to 30-Nov-2004
the Alentejo has been a centre for Instituto Superior Tecnico (the largest
industrial development. An indus- Portuguese engineering faculty), the Website:
trial harbour was built, and the area Lisbon University Foundation, and the Contact: Maria Augusta Machado
attracted many companies related ISCTE (Higher Institute of Business Martins Campos
to the petrochemical and energy and Labour Sciences) as well as the
sectors. These industries have con- main companies in the area, Petrogal,

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Land-use development and planning

AIRforALL: Forecasting extreme
levels of local ambient pollution
An early-warning system in the Romanian city of Baia Mare integrates meteorological and
pollution data to predict extreme local contamination levels, thereby enabling authorities and
polluters to inform citizens and take preventive measures.

Due to its topography and the pres- ever, air-quality forecasting was not The success of the pollution-forecast-
ence of two large smelting facilities, the technically available in Romania, and ing system has encouraged further
City of Baia Mare suffers from high lev- the NAM had no method of predicting cooperation between local agencies
els of pollution from toxic substances when and where exceptionally high responsible for environmental protec-
such as sulphur dioxide and lead levels of air pollution would occur. tion and other technical institutions,
powders. The county of Maramures, with a view to providing polluters with
in which Baia Mare is located, is one of The aim of the AIRforALL project was a sound scientific basis for steering
the country’s 20 most polluted areas to develop a computerised system their technologies in order to minimise
(also known as “hot-spots”). Here to forecast air-quality status in Baia the risk of excess pollution. The GIS-
the mortality caused by air-pollution Mare urban area and other neigh- supported system is also a valuable
related diseases is 15% higher than bouring zones 24 to 48 hours in instrument for developing zoning poli-
the national urban average. advance. Based on this warning, the cies and industry plans, and the NAM
local authorities, the polluters and the is currently implementing a further
Local weather conditions further population can react to prevent the LIFE project, ‘AIR-AWARE’ (LIFE05
increase the risk of incidences of occurrence of high levels of pollutants ENV/RO/000106), which seeks to
high concentrations of pollutants that and avoid high-risk areas. assist spatial planning, traffic man-
accumulate just above the ground agement and pollution control in the
level. The National Administration of The project created a scientific dis- Bucharest metropolitan area.
Meteorology (NAM) is legally respon- cussion ground for the central authori-
sible for issuing warnings about ties, local authorities and the pollut- With the early-warning system opera-
adverse weather and ambient pollu- ers, to jointly act to avoid increased tional, and its application in other
tion. At the start of the project, how- air contamination. high-risk areas probable, the most
important long-term criteria for the
Precisely predicting pollution scheme’s success will be the number
of pollution alerts that are reacted
The project succeeded in developing upon by industrial plants responsible
Project Number: a system which, based on remotely for the emissions.
LIFE00 ENV/RO/000987 processed local meteorological and
The forecasting system remotely
Title: Air quality forecast and air-pollution data, is able to forecast
processes local meteorological and
alarming system on pollution levels ambient air-quality with a high degree air pollution data.
of accuracy 24 hours in advance of
Beneficiary: National Administration
the expected adverse event. One of
of Meteorology, Romania
the project’s principal success factors
Total Budget: E462,000 was its close cooperation with a previ-
LIFE Contribution: E201,000 ous LIFE project, ‘ASSURE’ (LIFE99
ENV/RO/006746), which developed
Period: 01-Nov-2001 to 30-Apr-2005 a Geographical Information System
Website: (GIS)-based land-use planning sys-
tem to assess and forecast the envi-
Contact: Mihaela Caian
ronmental impact of anthropogenic
Email: activities.

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Land-use development and planning Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 9

MicoValdora: Sustainable
management of wild fungus-
producing forest ecosystems
Lack of control of mushroom picking is threatening the biodiversity of mushroom-producing areas
in the Navarra region of Spain. A LIFE co-funded project to establish an integrated management
system for the region has generated economic and social benefits.

Mushroom collection and cultivation concerns into official land-use policies A tourism-based model for the sus-
provides great potential for rural eco- and natural resources planning sys- tainable use of mushrooms led to
nomic development in the Valdorba tems at local and county level. the creation of six routes for mush-
region of Navarra. While most wood- room collecting and eco-tourism.
land mushroom areas are owned by Wide-ranging results The model combined accommoda-
local authorities and managed by tion, gastronomic offers focusing
the Navarra Regional Government, In total, 72 hectares of woodland were on mushrooms, courses and guided
mushroom production and collec- managed using forestry practises walks. The project contributed directly
tion is generally not controlled. Lack based on sustainable mycological to an estimated 30% increase in the
of management often leads to con- resources management, and 17 ha of area’s hotel occupancy. The region’s
flicts between the landowners and land were reforested with mycorrhized mushrooms and truffles attract about
mushroom collectors. Unsustainable trees. The technical team employed for 500 visitors a year.
picking practises threaten mushroom the LIFE project is now considered a
populations, soil fertility, plant devel- specialist reference unit for mushroom-
opment as well as the overall equi- related project development. The team
librium of the natural ecosystems is regularly requested to provide sup-
– mostly meadows, woodlands and port and advice to others.
traditionally cultivated land.
The project produced manuals and
The project beneficiary, the city coun- guidelines for sustainable manage-
cil of Leoz, one of seven municipali- ment tools and methodologies, such
ties comprising the Valdora region, as innovative mycological manage-
set out to establish an integrated ment plans, technical plans and for- Project Number:
management system for mushroom- estry programmes. Guidelines were LIFE00 ENV/E/000402
producing ecosystems. The aim established for the ecological labelling Title: Sustainable management of
was to ensure the conservation and of truffle and mushroom production at wild fungus-producing forest
enhancement of the ecosystem’s bio- European level. ecosystems in Valdorba, Navarra
diversity, while generating social and
Beneficiary: Leoz Council
economic benefits for the region’s A high level of media coverage was
(Ayuntamiento de Leoz), Spain
rural population. also achieved at local, regional and
national levels. Numerous events were Total Budget: E392,000
At the heart of the innovative project organised, including conferences, LIFE Contribution: E175,000
was the application of forestry prac- nine technical courses, tree-plant-
Period: 03-Sep-2001 to 03-Sep-2004
tises and land management methods ing days and even cookery lessons.
that combine sustainable management Around 250 landowners participated Website:
of mycological resources with rural through seminars, courses and visits. micovaldorba2/pagina.shtml
economical development. The project Though not originally foreseen, an Contact: José María Gallo Férez
developed tools aimed at integrating annual truffle fair was established, fur-
mycological resource management ther spreading the project’s results.

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Land-use development and planning

Ythan Project: Community approach
helps reduce pollution in Ythan estuary
Rising pollution is threatening bird life in the Ythan estuary, northeast Scotland. The Ythan project
implemented a range of education and awareness-raising activities to involve local communities
in the environmental protection of the river.

> The University of Hertfordshire de- The project worked with farmers to
signed computer software to enable complete more than 100 water man-
local farmers to complete nutrient agement plans for farms. Amounts
budgets. of suspended solids in neighbouring
> Farmers were encouraged to join streams were reduced and the nutri-
the Rural Stewardship Scheme ent budgets demonstrated that fer-
(RSS), to support the development tiliser use on farms could be cut by
of buffer strips alongside streams an average 15%. Another positive
and rivers. result was the establishment of a for-
> Water quality data was collected estry management plan for the Gight
over a three-year period. Local peo- Woods at Methlick, a large woodland
ple, supported by Scottish Environ- site adjacent to the River Ythan. More
Protecting water courses required
community involvement. ment Protection Agency staff, were than 2,000 broad-leaved trees were
involved in water quality sampling planted at 35 riparian sites.
at eight sites and in 50 river habitat
Aberdeenshire’s Ythan estuary in surveys. The project organised around 50
northeast Scotland is an extremely > Local communities organised aware- events, including a major conference
important site for birds, and is des- ness-raising events in schools and in October 2004. Many of these events
ignated as a Ramsar Site and as an community centres. They selected were organised and/or supported by
Important Bird Area. Levels of nitrates river restoration sites and completed community volunteers. The project
and phosphates in the estuary have work on 12 sites. has provided a model for similar initia-
been increasing in recent years. This tives to clean up river catchments.
has led to a growth of green macro- The project also monitored changes
algae in estuary waters that is a to the condition of the river and estu-
potential threat to the food supply of ary through the use of aerial photog-
Project Number:
wading birds. Current regulation is raphy, and bird counts were carried
only partially effective and does not out every two weeks for two years.
protect the estuary site from activities In addition, social surveys assessed Title: … sustainable land manage-
further upstream. public attitudes to the project and to ment in the Ythan catchment
water management at the beginning Beneficiary: The Ythan Project,
The project promoted sustainable and end of the project. c/o Aberdeenshire Council, UK
land and river management through
Total Budget: E737,000
raising public awareness and engag- The project was an excellent exam-
ing the community in a range of meas- ple of a participatory project in a rural LIFE Contribution: E358,000
ures that included: area. The outputs of the project were
Period: 01-Aug-2001 to 28-Feb-2005
> Local farmers were shown around considerable. Contacts with around
two farms that were established to 200 farmers resulted in a rise in appli- Website:
demonstrate the benefits of agri-en- cations to RSS, and more than 70 Contact: Keith Newton
vironmental schemes and nutrient kilometres of buffer strip had been Email:
budgeting. established by project end.

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Land-use development and planning Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 11

EcoMonte: Environmental
management in Austrian Alps
The Grosses Walsertal region of the Austrian Alps is tackling environmental problems related
to the depopulation of the area. The LIFE co-funded EcoMonte project coordinated measures
to raise the area’s environmental status to attract tourism and encourage sustainable

In 2000, the alpine region of the valley Results
of Grosses Walsertal was made one
of the first UNESCO Biosphere Parks The project helped the area gain an
in Austria. The region faces great Eco-Management and Audit Scheme
environmental challenges as a result (EMAS)1 certification, the EU volun-
of a declining local community and tary instrument which acknowledges
regional activity. organisations that improve their envi-
ronmental performance on a continu-
Given the steepness of the valley ous basis. Following EMAS guide-
slopes, effective management of the lines, the project team developed and
protective forests and mountainside applied innovative sustainability crite-
meadows is of prime importance. To ria for economic, social and cultural PV (Photovoltaic) panels: helping to
guarantee their continued manage- issues receiving the European Award achieve e2 (energy audit status).
ment, it is necessary to ensure the for Sustainability Reporting in 2005.
economic viability of land-use in the Says project manager Birgit Reutz: Ecomonte also successfully promoted
region. But opportunities are limited. “The EMAS system is well designed ecologically sustainable tourism in the
Commercial logging operations, tour- and it helped us a lot to work with region aimed at long-term impact. The
ism and agriculture are the main pil- such a well-defined structure. Hope- project brought together 37 hotels and
lars of the regional economy. fully, the added-value of LIFE par- restaurants in a Biosphere Reserve
ticipation will enable other regions to Partner Network. Four hotels received
The project continued the initiatives of learn from our experiences.” the Austrian Environmental Certificate
the past few years to ensure the sus- for Tourism.
tainable development of the region. Dissemination of the project’s results
These included the development of has been greatly enhanced by this
policy documents with the participa- European recognition. Another impor- Project Number:
tion of the local population, the imple- tant achievement was obtained in the LIFE00 ENV/A/000249
mentation of environmental agricul- field of energy. The project area was Title: Integrated Environmental
ture practices, and the introduction of certified e3 within the 5−rating scale Management for Sustainable
eco-tourism and energy efficiency. for energy use, which means that at Development
least 50% of the used energy is pro-
Beneficiary: Regional Planning
The objectives included: the intro- vided by renewable resources. The
Association Grosses Walsertal, Austria
duction of Integrated environment project demonstrated that the use of
management based on the EMAS renewable resources can be increased Total Budget: E1,065,000
Regulation for the public sector; the on a permanent basis, reversing the LIFE Contribution: E504,000
use of renewable regional resources trend seen in recent decades.
Period: 01-Oct-2001 to 31-Dec-2004
and development of a sustain-
able structure for tourism; and the Website:
development of the six small project Contact: Josef Tuertscher
municipalities to achieve e2 (energy 1
index_en.htm Email:
audit) status.

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Land-use development and planning

ECOREG: Regional eco-efficiency for
sustainable development
The EU’s sustainable development strategy is based on planning, in the words of the United
Nations’ Brundtland Commission: “to meet the needs of the present without compromising the
ability of future generations to meet their needs”. The ECOREG project set out to provide a sound
basis for this planning at regional level, by developing eco-indicators and a complementary
monitoring tool.

For sustainable development to consumption of natural resources
work, countries and communities and energy.
must find ways of applying the con- > Eco-efficiency indicators, which
cept of eco-efficiency coherently were developed by combining the
across the environmental, economic indicators in the above-mentioned
and social dimensions of develop- three categories.
ment. Different levels of govern-
ment are responsible for sustain- Planning for Kymenlaakso
able development policy, and have
a major role to play in ensuring this The indicators developed by the
policy is implemented in an informed project were demonstrated at Kymen-
way. In order to achieve this, reliable, laakso, a region on Finland’s south-
Indicators developed by the project
up-to-date and quantified informa- ern Baltic coast with a population were applied in the Kymenlaakso region.
tion is needed, as are assessment of around 186,000. Initial analysis
tools to interpret the information. showed the eco-efficiency of Kymen-
laakso improved between 1995 and
The ECOREG beneficiary, the Finn- 2002, but that the region faced signifi-
ish Environment Institute, sought to cant threats, chiefly contamination of
provide this information by consider- soil and water resources, eutrophica-
ing regional economic, environmen- tion of waters, risk of environmental
tal and socio-cultural factors as part accidents, climate change, ecotoxic-
of an analysis of eco-efficiency for ity and biodiversity loss.
sustainable development. A series
of eco-indicators across four cat- The project’s results were included in Project Number:
egories was developed: the Regional Plan for Kymenlaakso, LIFE02 ENV/FIN/000331
> 21 socio-cultural indicators covering indicating the way in which the devel- Title: The Eco-Efficiency of Regions
eight themes: population change, opment of the eco-efficiency assess- - Case Kymenlaakso
employment, social exclusion, ment mechanism brought together
Beneficiary: Finnish Environment
health, safety, education, culture different interested parties, including
Institute, Finland
and local identity. the regional authorities and industry.
> 11 economic and material-flow in- The indicators and the analytical Total Budget: E681,000
dicators across four themes: back- tool for assessing them are relevant LIFE Contribution: E338,000
ground factors, economic growth, to developing policy at all levels:
Period: 01-Sep-2002 to 31-Dec-2004
economic welfare of the population the results are highly transferable
and material flows. to both larger and smaller regions, Website: http://www.environment.
> 26 environmental indicators relating municipalities, and even to compa- fi/syke/ecoreg
to issues such as atmospheric emis- nies or organisations in the context Contact: Matti Melanen
sions, water quality, transport, en- of their environmental management
vironmental accidents, biodiversity, systems.

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Land-use development and planning Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 13

CER-COM+: Environmental
measures boost local economy
in Northern Italy
Seven cities in northern Italy, Comunità Montana, have teamed up to implement a raft of
environmental measures including the establishment of guidelines for sustainable development
and the promotion of responsible tourism. LIFE co-funding helped the region achieve the
EMAS environmental management certification, while also aiding economic development.

The Comunità Montana lies in an area tural produce through designation of
of exceptional environmental impor- origin and quality labelling. Certifica-
tance in the Nure and Arda valleys of tion is key to the success of both of
North Italy. The community set out to these ongoing initiatives.
introduce environmental policies and
bolster its reputation for environmen- In order to achieve this status,
tal excellence as a way of attracting Comunità Montana, with the aid of
tourists and businesses to the area. LIFE programme funding, addressed
the problems of waste, landslides,
Achieving EMAS 1 (the EU’s Eco- and wastewater dumping. It coordi-
management and Audit scheme) cer- nated improvements in waste collec-
tification is an important part of the tion and the reduction of non-autho-
region’s development strategy. The rised disposal areas; it introduced The project helped to reduce pollution
of water sources.
community aims to boost tourism policies to prevent landslides and
by improving the area’s environmen- control existing land movements,
tal reputation and to strengthen the and it helped reduce pollution of
brand value of its traditional agricul- water sources. This action plan is a direct result
of the LIFE project. A coordinated
Initiatives to reduce the damage approach that includes all the rele-
1 caused to industry and the envi- vant stakeholders and cooperation
index_en.htm ronment by these problems have between towns and cities has been
continued. Together with the local a lasting legacy of the project. It
Project Number: authorities, Comunità Montana has encouraged local populations to
LIFE02 ENV/IT/000092 set targets to be reached by the end take an active interest in environ-
Title: Comunità Montana EMAS II of 2007, as part of a Û4,900,000 mental protection and reinforced
Certification investment plan. In accordance with the link between environmental cer-
the drive to stabilise the third of the tification and economic prosperity.
region’s territory that is subject to EMAS registration will ensure conti-
Comunità Montana, Italy
landslides, the plan aims to add 100 nued efforts.
Total Budget: E187,000 hectares of forest. The plan also
LIFE Contribution: E93,000 aims to increase waste collections The economic benefit to Comunità
to reach a quarter of all waste and Montana of the implementation of the
Period: 01-Oct-2002 to 31-Dec-2004
to reduce by 25% the amount of action plan is estimated to be about
Website: wastewater not treated. New water Û1.8 million annually, along with the purification (depuration) plants are creation of hundreds of new jobs. The
Contact: Gian Luigi Molinari being built and the sewer system LIFE project has served as a model
is being extended to include pre- for seven other mountain communi-
viously unconnected settlements. ties in northern Italy.

Best2006.indd 13 24/10/06 14:21:21
Water management
The Water Framework Directive 2000 sets out a timetable of actions for

Member States to follow in order to achieve good status of waters by 2015.

It has introduced the objective to achieve good ecological status for surface

waters and has therefore emphasised the need to understand and monitor

water resources from a different perspective.

Any activities which impact negatively on a water body in terms of it

reaching good status must be identified and addressed. Intrinsically

therefore, integrated river basin management is advocated, and issues

such as water pricing, water and wastewater treatment and transport,

flooding and irrigation; pollution prevention and planning are covered by the


WFD Directive (2000/60/EC)

Best2006.indd 14 24/10/06 14:21:24
Water management Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 15

Dairy no water: Towards
self-sufficient dairy food production
Dutch dairy food producer, DOC Kaas, made great water savings in its cheese, whey and con-
centrated milk business by using condensate from the evaporators in the production process.
The LIFE-Environment project cut the amount of water the company wastes by 35%.

were achieved with the first pro-
duction line:
> A reduction in water intake of 550
million litres per year (275 million
litres short of the 825 million litres
per year target).
> A reduction in wastewater from 800
to 545 million litres/year.
> The elimination of the need for
groundwater intake.
This reduction in the 00

amount of ground and
drinking water used is
particularly important

in reaching the goals
set by the Water Frame-
work Directive1.
Cost savings were also notable.
The dairy producer saved Û550,000 a
At the new plant, the beneficiary sought
a system for managing the process.
to close the internal water cycle.
A flow of water was created in the year through a water intake reduction
DOC Kaas aimed for its dairy plant in factory with water buffers of differ- of 550,000 m³ at Û1 per m³. The new
Hoogeveen in the Netherlands to be ent temperatures and several heat/ methodology also produced impres-
completely self-sufficient in terms of cold exchangers. By not having to sive energy savings. The project
water. All the water needed for the pump water from a water supplier, achieved the following results:
production of dairy products would energy savings were also possible. > For cooling, a reduction in energy
come from condensate fed back use of 6,196,097 kWh/year. Such
into the process. The LIFE project Water and energy savings a result translates to a reduction of
set out to achieve this aim and, CO2 of some 3.5 kton/year.
as a consequence, greatly reduce While the beneficiary’s ambitious > For heating, a reduction in energy
the amount of water the company targets were not completely real- use of 2,408,418 m3 gas per year.
wastes. ised – the new plant is not totally This translates to a reduction of CO2
water self-sufficient – the project of around 4.3 kton/year.
Water present in milk is filtered off in resulted in great reductions in
the production of cheese whey, and the use of groundwater, drinking
this water can be used again in the water and energy. The benefici-
process cycle. The project designed ary estimates that around 70% of
a method for extracting the water – the water current being discarded
1 WFD (2000/60/EC) http://ec.europa.
ensuring it met the required stand- is suitable for reuse. At the end of eu/environment/water/water-framework/
ard for re-use in the process – and the project, the following results index_en.html

Best2006.indd 15 24/10/06 14:21:27
Water management

Water & milk

The European dairy industry produces more than 6,200 million kg of cheese from
around 55,800 million litres of milk. Cheese consists of 42% water, in contrast with
milk, which is 88% water. Traditional cheese factories, however, use 0.8 litres water
to process 1 litre of milk and drain off 1.1 litres of wastewater. The water used can
be divided into two types: internal process water and cooling water.

With the current installation, a total relatively cheap compared with the
annual CO 2 reduction of some 7.8 cost of re-using the water contained
kton has been achieved. in milk.

The main obstacles to achieving the The new dairy plant in the Nether-
project’s objectives was the com- lands took account of environmental
plexity of water management and concerns and sought to avoid costly
a higher than expected demand for later adjustments to its design. It was
water at the new plant. The beneficiary favourable to aim for a near water-
Other cheese and whey factories could
is continuing efforts towards achieving self-sufficient plant. Protecting the
benefit from the technology.
the objective of becoming self-sup- environment gives the new plant a
porting in water. It is improving water strong marketing position.
management and identifying further
ways to reuse wastewater.

Long-term effects

The potential for transferring the pro-
ject’s technology to other cheese
and whey factories as well as other
companies in the food sector is high.
Implementing the new water mana-
DOC Kaas aimed for water self- gement system is complex and will Project Number:
sufficiency at its new dairy plant. LIFE03 ENV/NL/000488
mainly interest companies about
to build new production plants. Title: A dairy industry which is self-
Nonetheless, self-supporting plants supporting in water
will become increasingly attractive as
Beneficiary: DOC Kaas BA Hoog-
discharge taxes and costs of drinking
water and groundwater increase.
Total Budget: E7,023,000

LIFE Contribution: E975,000
More investment is needed to make
Period: 01-Dec-2002 to 01-Jul-2005
the Doc Kaas plant self-supporting
in water. The project beneficiary, Website:
however, says that financial gains are
Contact: J. L. Oosterveld
too low to make such investments
economically viable. Groundwater is Email:

Best2006.indd 16 24/10/06 14:21:32
Water management Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 17

ANPHOS: A new process for treating
phosphate-rich wastewater
The ANPHOS project tackled the major environmental problem caused by phosphates in waste-
water. When these pollutants enter freshwater systems, the unchecked growth of aquatic weeds
and algae results in deoxygenisation of watercourses. The consequence can be ‘dead zones’
devoid of life.

treated with magnesium oxide and Cost-cutting benefits
the resulting struvite can be used
to produce magnesium ammonium In addition, LMW calculated sub-
phosphate crystal, which can be stantial cost benefits from the
used as a fertiliser, thus closing the new technology: operating costs
phosphorous cycle. were expected to be reduced from
Û275,340 to Û203,800 per year.
Large-scale challenge
Enabling companies to cut costs
The challenge was to apply the while introducing new technologies
research on a large-scale to indus- also promises future benefits in
trial effluents resulting from potato terms of employment growth, espe-
Wastewater treatment demonstration processing. The LIFE programme cially as struvite technology has
plant at Kruiningen, the Netherlands.
supported LMW in the ANPHOS the potential to be applied across
project, which aimed to build a a number of food manufacturing
demonstration wastewater treat- processes, including starch, milling
LIFE beneficiary Lamb-Weston/Mei- ment plant at the Kruiningen facil- and sugar.
jer V.O.F. (LMW), an international ity, one of the largest in the world.
potato products company with a As well as testing the process, the
European base in Kruiningen, the project would produce valuable data
Netherlands, was keenly aware of on operating conditions, providing a
the problems caused by phosphate- foundation for the application of the
rich wastewater. LMW’s processes struvite process in other industrial Project Number:
generate large effluent volumes, plants. LIFE03 ENV/NL/000465
which were previously treated with Title: Environmentally friendly
metal salts, such as iron chloride. The project opened a demonstra- phosphorus removal in anaerobe
However, the main result of this was tion installation with a capacity of effluent …
to transfer the problem from the 100 m 3 per hour in February 2004.
Beneficiary: Lamb-Weston/Meijer
effluent to a resulting sludge con- Testing demonstrated clear environ-
V.O.F., The Netherlands
taining iron phosphates, which must mental benefits:
itself be disposed of. Commonly the Total Budget: E965,000
sludge was landfilled, incinerated or > Cutting the amount of phosphate per LIFE Contribution: E170,000
dumped at sea. ton of potato processed from 0.3 kg
Period: 01-Dec-2002 to 01-Jun-2005
to 0.05 kg
LMW carried out a successful > Reducing the phosphate content of Website:
research project with Dutch gov- effluent by as much as 90%
ernment assistance to approach the > Possible recycling of 75% – almost Contact: Cees van Rij
problem using a different technique 1.5 million m3 per year – of effluent
– the struvite process. In this proc- > Keeping heavy metal residues in the
ess, phosphate-rich wastewater is struvite to legal limits

Best2006.indd 17 24/10/06 14:21:33
Water management

Bothnian Bay:
Managing the common sea
Human activities pose a threat to the marine environment of Bothnian Bay in the Baltic Sea. The
Bothnian Bay LIFE project developed a database for the exchange of information about the bay’s
water quality and introduced a plan for the sustainable management of this important conserva-
tion area.

Located between Finland and water discharges of 31 rivers and use
Sweden, Bothnian Bay is the most of the land in their catchment area.
northern basin of the Baltic Sea. The > Information about the 52 industrial
bay, which freezes over for several plants and wastewater treatment
months of the year, is particularly plants discharging into the bay, in-
vulnerable due to the scarcity of cluding annual loading data.
species living in it, its arctic con- > Top ten lists of pollutants for rivers,
ditions and its shallow, brackish industries and wastewater treatment
waters (average depth 40 metres). plants.
Moreover the bay is exposed to
pollution from the local steel, pulp In addition to the database, the
and paper industries as well as from project also developed a web-
sewage treatment plants. And even based Best Available Technology Information stand: spreading knowledge
more importantly, the bay is affected (BAT) information exchange system about the bay’s water quality.
by agricultural and forestry prac- for the metal industry and produced
tices, peat mining, and to a certain a versatile exhibition for dissemina- environmental requirements and to
extent, by localised construction tion purposes. improve information exchange and
work related to sea transport. cooperation in the Bothnian Bay area.
The project, which began at the end of NOREC is continuing to cooperate
Tools for managing the sea 2001, also developed a model for esti- with the project partners to imple-
area mating the impact of human actions ment the action plan and maintain
on the coastal areas. The Bothnian databases.
Many different national and regional Bay Water Quality and Ecosystem
bodies monitor environmental condi- Model allows experts working in the
tions in the bay, and the project identi- area to assess the impact of loading
fied the need to pool together various on water quality. Assessments are Project Number:
information sources. To achieve this made by calculating likely changes to LIFE00 ENV/FIN/000646
aim, the project built up an extensive the concentration of soluble nutrients Title: Integrated Management
online database under the guidance and algae. Human activity has caused System for the Bothnian Bay
of the beneficiary, the North Ostro- nutrient enrichment that disrupts the
Beneficiary: North Ostrobothnia
bothnia Regional Environment Centre bay’s ecosystem.
Regional Environment Centre
(NOREC) in Finland. The database
features various indicators of water The project surveyed the views of Total Budget: E1,049,000
quality in the bay: a wide range of experts and stake- LIFE Contribution: E520,000
holders to produce an action plan
Period: 01-Aug-2001 to 31-Jan-2005
> Physical and chemical data from 62 for Bothnian Bay. The plan outlines
observation points. targets and priorities for sustainable Website:
> Results of mobile automatic water development and sets guidelines for
Contact: Anne Laine
quality monitoring. monitoring and status assessments.
> Data on the material transport and It also aims to meet EU and national Email:

Best2006.indd 18 24/10/06 14:21:39
Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 19
Photo: Marco Roccato

Minimising the environmental
impact of economic activities
European Union policy on the environmental impact of economic activities is

implemented through a wide range of instruments. The most important legislation

includes the 1996 Directive on Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (IPPC),

which aims at minimising emissions to water, air and soil from industrial point

sources throughout Europe. The directive defines common rules on the author-

isation of permits for industrial installations, which have to be based on Best

Available Techniques (BAT). BAT refers to the most advanced techniques that

can be used to achieve a high level of environmental protection for the industrial

sector in question.

Directive 96/61/EC

Best2006.indd 19 24/10/06 14:21:43
Minimising the impact
of economic activities

RefinARS: Reducing the environmental
impact of refineries
The process of obtaining light oils from heavy ones creates sulphur dioxide. The Italian RefinARS
project developed a means of using an absorbent to recover sulphur and reduce the overall
environmental impact of the refining process.
Photo: Marco Roccato

Fluid Catalytic Cracking (FCC) is a
frequently used process in refineries
for separating oils. During the pro-
cess, carbon deposited on the
surface of the catalyst is burnt,
transforming the sulphur content
into sulphur dioxide, a strong pol-
lutant. Alkaline solutions (sodium
hydroxide and calcium hydroxide),
which are used to absorb the

ST OF T sulphur dioxide, create
BE sulphates and sulphites

that are damaging to
the environment.

The RefinARS project
00 aimed to “desulphurise”
5-2006 flue emissions result-
ing from the refining proc-
ess, using an absorbing buffer
that allows sulphur to be recovered
and regenerated. This buffer solu-
tion contains sodium hydroxide and Buffer regeneration plant at ENI’s
Sanazzaro refinery.
phosphoric acid. It was implemented
at ENI’s Sannazzaro refinery plant in
northern Italy, which has a capacity produces a gaseous stream (con- Setting the standard
for processing 10 million tons/year taining SOx, sent to the sulphur
of crude oil. recovery unit), the regenerated Tests were carried out to compare per-
buffer that can be recycled to the formance and analyse the overall envi-
The project’s chief task was to opti- FCC flue gas desulphurisation, and ronmental impact. The following results
mise the process for regenerating a minor solid waste. were achieved:
the buffer used to scrub the flue gas > Sulphur dioxide emissions reduced
coming from a FCC unit. To perform Construction work on the buffer to 250 mg/Nm3 in flue gas (about 1/6
this task, a regeneration plant was regeneration plant began in July of the legal limit).
constructed and connected to the 2002 and was completed in May > The efficiency of sulphur dioxide
FCC plant. 2003. Optimisation of the process removal raised to above 85%, with
began in September 2004 when corresponding recovery of saleable
The buffer regeneration process is charges with different sulphur con- sulphur.
based on the evaporation of the tent were fed into the FCC unit and > Achieving 460 kg/day of solid waste,
solution coming from the FCC flue the circulating buffer flow rate was eliminating any impact the industrial
gas desulphurisation. The process changed. plant has on transportation and soil.

Best2006.indd 20 24/10/06 14:21:45
Minimising the impact
of economic activities Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 21

Photo: Marco Roccato
> The concentration of sulphates and The technology is highly reproducible
sulphites in wastewater reduced to and can be applied to other industries
negligible amounts. with similar emission problems (sulphu-
> Saving of 97% on absorbing solution ric acid production, metallurgy).
replacement and 25% on energy.
> 40% saving in FCC operating A license to use the patent can be
costs. obtained from the company, and the
Valero Company has asked for permis-
The results achieved at the plant were sion to implement the project in one of
stable over time, an important factor for its refineries in the US.
the feasibility of the technology. Refi-
nARS showed that it is possible to feed In fact, the dissemination programme
refinery plants with high-sulphur con- to reach potential interested parties at
tent without increasing pollutant emis- a local, regional, national and EU level
sions. It demonstrated that high quality was an important aspect of the project.
refined products can be obtained from Public administrations and institutions
poor raw materials and that plants were contacted as well as relevant
struggling to meet environmental tar- industrial sectors.
gets can improve their performance.
High investment costs may be an According to the beneficiary, “The
obstacle, but it is estimated that the possibility of updating EU environ-
initial outlay will be recovered through mental policy and legislation in light of
financial savings within five years the introduction of the new proposed
technology might also be assessed.”
Details of the new plant showing
Implementing the RefinARS methodol- the stripper (top) and evaporator
Spreading the word ogy could help refineries comply with (bottom right).
the IPCC directive1 and the Auto-Oil
The environmental and economic bene- II Programme2 that set a limit on the
fits of the RefinARS project render it a amount of sulphur in petrol.
Best Available Technology (BAT) for
FCC flue gas desulphurisation. The Project Number:
technology can be implemented in the LIFE00 ENV/IT/000012
other 53 cracking plants (FCCs) in the Title: Absorption & recovery of
EU and in 49 sulphur recovery plants. sulphur from flue gas of the Fluid
Catalytic Cracking…

Beneficiary: ENI Spa, Italy
1 Directive 96/61/EC of 24 September Total Budget: E8,767,000
1996 concerning integrated pollution
prevention and control. http://eippcb.jrc. LIFE Contribution: E1,274,000
2 COM (2000)626 Period: From October 2001 to Sep-
environment/docum/00626_en.htm tember 2004
Photo: Marco Roccato


Contact: Andrea Amoroso
Inside the refinery: desulphurised Email:
flue gas stack.

Best2006.indd 21 24/10/06 14:21:48
Minimising the impact
of economic activities

DETECTIVE: Dry-cleaning with liquid
carbon dioxide
The Netherlands-steered Detective project has achieved remarkable success in developing a
new dry-cleaning technology. Involving partners from five EU Member States, the three-year
LIFE co-funded project successfully demonstrated that textile cleaning with liquid carbon dioxide
(LCO2) is a safer, more eco-friendly and competitive alternative to perchloroethylene (perc), the
current first-choice dry-cleaning solvent in Europe.

Dry cleaning operations release more
than 70,000 tonnes of perc per year in
Europe. The VOC Solvents Directive1
on the limitation of emissions of vola-
tile organic compounds due to the use
of organic solvents in certain activities
and installations, is the main instru-
ment for the reduction of VOC

ST OF T emissions in the European
BE Community. The dry-

cleaning sector is spe-
cifically addressed in

this directive. Used by
95% of EU dry clean-
00 ers, perc is also thought
5-2006 to carry risks to human
health and reproduction and
shows toxic effects (neuro-toxi-
cological impairment, kidney damage
and carcinogenetic effects). At the beginning of the project in 2000,
textile cleaning with LCO2 was
emerging as a promising new
At the beginning of the project in 2000, At the end of the project (June 2004)
textile cleaning with LCO2 was emerg- the project had met its prime objec-
ing as a promising new technology. tive: demonstrating dry-cleaning of
But at that time only bench-scale tests textiles using LCO2 two full-scale pilot
were available and full-scale experi- units – one in Denmark and the other
ments had still to be conducted. in the Netherlands. Performance advantages

The project consortium (including Elec- The project also supported the estab- LCO 2 is non-toxic and non-flam-
trolux and Aga/Linde of Sweden) was lishment of a franchise textile-clean- mable. It is produced in an almost
steered by the beneficiary Krom Stomer- ing organisation – Hangers Cleaners pure form in oil refining and ammo-
ijen, a Dutch dry-cleaning company. Europe nia production. It also causes no
The team sought to optimise full-scale by project partner AGA/Linde AG. groundwater contamination. As a
application of the new technology. Although the new technology is just renewable resource, LCO 2 has an
starting to establish itself in the mar- advantage over perc, which is made
ket, the team believes it is sufficiently from exhaustible mineral reserves.
1 1999/13/EC of 11 March 1999)
developed to receive policy incentives It is separate from the combustion
site/en/consleg/1999/L/01999L0013- and that its emergence provides a processes and not released as a
20040430-en.pdf sustainable alternative to perc. greenhouse gas.

Best2006.indd 22 24/10/06 14:21:56
Minimising the impact
of economic activities Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 23

The full scale pilot demonstration test-
ing took place at the beneficiary Krom
Stomerijen, in Gorredijk the Neth-
erlands and at project partner Kymi
Rens, in Aalborg, Denmark. LCO2 is
distilled and recycled in a closed sys-
tem at these pilot sites. Each pilot has
a rotating drum with a volume of 120
litres and a garment load capacity of
15 kg in the Netherlands and 17 kg in
Denmark. The project achieved excel-
lent results in both countries using 38
different textile materials and nine dif-
ferent garment articles.

The performance of industrial LCO2
textile cleaning machines in the
Netherlands and Denmark was com-
pared to that of conventional per-
chloroethylene (perc) dry cleaning LCO2 technology could replace perc
as regards stain removal, effect on completely within the next 10-20 years.
textile properties, energy, safety and > Loss of textile fibres during the
cost price. In addition, several com- cleaning cycle, leading to longer
parisons were made with three other garment lifetime. LCO2 textile cleaning also resulted in
alternatives for perc: wet cleaning, sharp creasing of fabrics suscepti-
hydrocarbon cleaning and cyclosi- The development of detergents for ble to cold conditions (typically 5°C)
loxane cleaning. LCO2 is still in its infancy. Available during cleaning and decompres-
detergents for LCO 2 textile clean- sion. Creasing can be minimised if
The cleaning performance of LCO2 ing have been shown to increase the latter step occurs at a higher
ranged from 60% to 100% to that cleaning performance, but results temperature during the last 10 min-
of perc depending on the nature of depend on the type of stain. Fur- utes. To be comparable in price with
the stain. Cleaning performances in ther improvements to detergents perc, LCO2 cleaning requires greater
relation to the three other potential and machine input methods are quantities. Such quantities may be
alternatives to perc dry cleaning were expected. prohibitive for smaller dry cleaning
even better. In several cases LCO2 outlets.
was found to be more effective. Drawbacks
Cost analysis
Other advantages of LCO 2 textile The project identified, however, cer-
cleaning over perc dry cleaning were tain drawbacks to LCO2 textile clean- The project arrived at the following
also found. The method causes less: ing compared to perc dry cleaning. conclusions:
> Dimensional change to sensitive It found that there was greater dif-
fabrics. fuse greying or soil re-deposition of > LCO2 textile cleaning is more effi-
> Fabric colour loss (especially for pig- fabrics during LCO2 textile cleaning. cient than perc in resource use and
ment colours). This effect can be reduced by adding waste disposal once the minimum
> Direct colour bleeding from one fab- dummy fabrics made from (di-)ace- quantities are used.
ric to the other. tate with each cleaning cycle. These > Costs of make-up solvents and de-
> Loss of glitter glued on basic fab- fabrics provide preferential sites for tergents are comparable to perc dry
rics. re-deposition and greying. Another cleaning.
> Loss of oily/fatty finishes. option is to filter LCO2 during clean- > LCO2 textile-cleaning labour costs
> Damage to coatings or laminates ing, similar to filtering common in perc are comparable to those of perc dry
that swell in perc. dry cleaning. cleaning.

Best2006.indd 23 24/10/06 14:22:03
Minimising the impact
of economic activities

> Investment-related costs of LCO2
textile cleaning per year are higher, LCO2 safety
but equal per kg of cleaned gar- Several safety aspects have to be considered during installation and operation of
ment. This is due to the higher an- the LCO2 textile cleaning process.
nual capacity of the LCO 2 textile > Safety valves installed in the LCO2 storage vessel and cleaning unit. Valves also
cleaning machine, at two cycles have to be checked regularly.
per hour, compared to perc dry > The pressure vessels have to be checked according to national regulations.
cleaning at two cycles per 1.5 > LCO2 textile cleaning units have to be manufactured according to CE mark provi-
hour. These values were confirmed sions.
by professional use. The conven- > Extensive monitoring of indoor LCO2 levels is required to detect any unanticipated
tional perc dry cleaning times were LCO2 release. If levels exceed 0.5%, LCO2 alarms must go off and machines must
confirmed by measurements at be shut down. This level is equal to the eight hours’ exposure threshold limit.
KROM. > When filling storage vessels, LCO2 gas expansion cold traps must be prevented
> The overall costs of LCO2 textile as they can block piping.
cleaning are 20% lower than those
of perc dry cleaning: Û1.17 per kg
of textile versus Û1.43. This result
is mainly due to the shorter turna- Combination of wet and dry It also improves working conditions
round time of LCO2 textile cleaning. cleaning points the way and allows pregnant women to work
These values were partially validated in textile cleaning.
by TNO’s (the Netherlands Organisa- LCO2 textile cleaning is best com-
tion for Applied Scientific Research) bined with wet cleaning to clean the While still only recently introduced to
annual surveys of the textile cleaning entire spectrum of consumer gar- the market, the technology has the
sector. Values for individual compa- ments and textiles including curtains potential to replace perc completely
nies can deviate by 10%, occasion- and sheets. Combined LCO2 and wet within the next 10 to 20 years. The
ally up to 20%, mainly driven by in- cleaning can competitively replace speed with which it will replace perc
ternal logistics. current hazardous perc dry cleaning depends on the obsolescence of cur-
methods and has several environmen- rent perc machines, the price and
In the comparison trial, LCO2 tech- tal benefits. Replacing perc by LCO2 control of perc, available investment
nology scored the highest of the five eliminates annual emissions of 70,000 funds, knowledge transfer and gov-
methods. tonnes of perc into the atmosphere. ernmental regulations.

Detective posted excellent results for
LCO2 textile cleaning.

Project Number:
LIFE00 ENV/NL/000797

Title: Demonstration Textile CO2
Treatment Introduction Validation

Beneficiary: Krom Stomerijen B.V.

Total Budget: E804,000

LIFE Contribution: E241,000

Period: 01-Jul-2001 to 30-Jun-2004

Website: and

Contact: Han Van Kuijk


Best2006.indd 24 24/10/06 14:22:10
Minimising the impact
of economic activities Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 25

OSIS: Improving oil spill detection
in the North Sea
Ships and offshore installations are the most common sources of more than 500,000 tons of oil
spilled into the marine environment every year. The OSIS new surveillance system, developed
thanks to LIFE co-funding, is helping to identify leaks and plan corrective action.

Effectively controlling oil pollution has,
however, proved difficult. Airborne
Surveillance Systems currently used
to control outlets of oil are too expen-
sive to be utilised efficiently against
the large number of offshore installa-
tions. Together with ships such instal-
lations are the most common sources
for the more than 500,000 tons of oil
spilled annually into the marine
environment 2 . The lack
of monitoring systems

means that offshore
installations have not
yet been included in

the strict OSPAR rules
OSIS oil spill detector sensor is now governing oil pollution in
being developed for ships.
line of Europe. Together with large designated special areas.
oil spills, such pollution constitutes
Europe is the world’s largest market in a major threat to the environment OSPAR call for technologies
crude oil imports, representing about and places enormous demands on
one third of the world total1. A very national authorities responsible for “In the late 1990s, OSPAR called for
high percentage of oil and refined rapid response and clean-up opera- technologies, such as OSIS (Oil Spill
products are transported to and from tions. Tackling this environmental Identification System) to be developed
Europe by sea. Inevitably, some of threat is the 1992 Convention for the so that they could enforce a new type
this oil makes its way into the marine Protection of the Marine Environment of regulation in those special areas,”
environment. of the Northeast Atlantic, the OSPAR said project manager Peter Moeller-
Convention. OSPAR defines special Jensen of OSIS International, a pri-
Accidents that had massive envi- areas with tough emission limits for vately owned Danish SME. The OSIS
ronmental consequences, such as oil pollution team thus sought to demonstrate a
the “Prestige” or “Erika”, powerfully potential solution to this widespread
illustrate the devastation that can be
caused by ship pollution. However, 1 Source: Energy Information Administra-
even routine ship operations pollute tion
the sea through ballast water, tank 2 Source: Global Marine Oil Pollution
washings and engine room effluent Information Gateway http://oils.gpa.unep.
discharges. org/facts/sources.htm

Every day, large amounts of oil
deliberately pumped into the sea by OSIS improves oil spill detection
ships along almost the entire coast- in the North Sea.

Best2006.indd 25 24/10/06 14:22:15
Minimising the impact
of economic activities

OSIS sensor system shown here at the
front of the oil rig.

tem allows improved and continu-
ous monitoring that is more effective
and less costly than the current use
of planes. OSIS is also cheaper and
more accurate than systems based on
conventional satellite imagery.

Raising awareness

Additionally, the OSIS team carried
out exemplary awareness-raising
activities directed at decision-mak-
ers. In 2003, OSIS was presented at
the OSPAR/Helsinki Convention min-
isterial meeting (June 2003), the IMO
Marine Environment Protection Com-
problem of international concern by The project’s fully achieved the objec- mittee (July 2003) and a GIS Remote
developing online remote monitoring tive of demonstrating the viability of a Sensing Symposium (July 2003). In
of offshore installations in any location permanently mounted sensor system 2004, OSIS contributed to the OSPAR
based on new sensor technology. The to identify oil discharges from offshore technical working group meeting,
new system would use a new genera- installations in those parts of the North InterSpill2004 Conference and Exhi-
tion of communication satellites and Sea designated as ‘special areas’ by bition and the Offshore Northern Seas
the Internet. the International Maritime Organisa- Conference. Finally, OSIS attended
tion (IMO). This was achieved by the the EU Management Committee on
The project, which began in Janu- development of technology providing Marine Pollution (MCMP) in Brussels
ary 2002, aimed to demonstrate the 24-hour online surveillance. Accord- where all parties involved in national
technology required for the imple- ing to the beneficiary, the OSIS sys- pollution prevention were present.
mentation and enforcement of pro-
grammes and measures adopted
under the OSPAR strategy. It would
also provide a tool required to imple-
ment Community environment policy
and legislation concerning the marine
environment, as specifically stated in
Danish national law from 1998.

Taking up the challenge of helping
to develop a new generation of sen-
sor technologies, aside from project
beneficiary OSIS, were the partners,
the Danish agencies for trade and
industry, environmental protection
and energy.

North Sea tests with
oil substitute

Best2006.indd 26 24/10/06 14:22:26
Minimising the impact
of economic activities Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 27

The OSPAR Convention [], which
entered into force in March 1998 and includes the participation of the EU, devel-
ops new programmes and measures required to identify, prioritise and monitor the
emissions, discharges and losses of substances to the marine environment.

These activities were supplemented Data gathered by OSIS is also trans-
by a media campaign that led to ferred via satellite to onshore decision-
numerous articles in relevant trade makers and can be used in conjunc-
publications. tion with the geographical information
system (GIS). This provides further
Over a three-year period, numer- information as to the context of a leak
ous tests were conducted includ- and helps the planning of corrective
ing missions with the Danish Envi- actions. “This will enhance the infor-
ronmental survey ship as well as mation for decision-making concern-
with German and Dutch oil combat ing corrective action and also provide
services in the North Sea. The OSIS opportunities for efficient clean-up
sensor is able to identify oil-films operations,” says Mr Moeller-Jensen.
from a thickness of 0.01 to 1.5 mm
Close-up of the permanently-mounted
on the water surface. It can esti- This demonstration project, which sensor.
mate the leaked volumes with +/- closed in April 2005, was able to post
25% accuracy in normal weather impressive results from tests for the
conditions and with some +/-50% detection of spills surrounding oils rigs A new LIFE-Environment co-funded
accuracy on rough seas. The exten- in the North Sea. OSIS technology, project, launched by the same ben-
sion of the leak can be monitored designed for fixed offshore structures eficiary in 2004, “Oil Spill Identification
up to a distance of up to 5 kilome- such as oil platforms, is also prov- System for Marine Transport” (LIFE04
tres from the sensor. ing attractive for maritime transport. ENV/DK/00076) is currently adapting
the OSIS sensor and transmission
system for ships.
Latest sensor aboard “Cunnar

Project Number:
LIFE02 ENV/DK/000151

Title: Sensor for identification of oil
spills from offshore installations

Beneficiary: OSIS International,

Total Budget: E3,359,000

LIFE Contribution: E867,000

Period: 01-Jan-2002 till 30-Apr-2005


Contact: Peter Moeller-Jensen


Best2006.indd 27 24/10/06 14:22:36
Minimising the impact
of economic activities

Stiim: Traditional thermo techniques
to treat cereal seeds
Project Stiim implemented a new system for treating cereal seeds in a Swedish plant using
traditional thermo-techniques. It showed that it is commercially viable to ensure seeds are
disease free without the use of pesticides.

Back to the future After evaluation by sampling, testing,
and quality control of the prototype,
For these reasons, researchers from a full-scale processing system was
Acanova AB (now Seedgard AB), a developed that has the capacity to
Swedish company specialising in treat more than 200 tons per day. As
inventions for the agriculture and a result of the effectiveness and low
forest-ry sectors, worked with col- energy consumption of the system,
leagues from the Swedish University ThermoSeed has been approved by
of Agricultural Sciences to develop a the Swedish Seed Testing and Certi-
more environmentally friendly tech- fication Institute as an alternative to
nique. They devised a thermal seed chemical seed treatment. The first
treatment process, ThermoSeed, ThermoSeed plant was opened in
which uses hot humid air as a heat- Skara, Sweden in September 2005.
ing medium and fluid bed technol-
ogy to ensure even exposure of thick Though the new technique is not
seed layers. Small-scale testing in suit-able for all cereal types, it has
several countries of Scandinavia and been shown to be highly effective
central Europe has produced prom- for most strands of barley, wheat,
ising results. oats and rice seeds. It is cost effec-
Treating cereal seeds using traditional tive and testing on other seed types,
thermo-techniques. A larger scale demonstration was such as vegetable seeds, has been
necessary, however, in order to promising.
Researchers in Sweden have looked develop the system for commercial
to the past for inspiration. Using trad- use. In 2004, Acanova began work
itional thermo techniques to treat on the LIFE-supported project, Stiim,
cereal seeds, a non-chemical system with the beneficiary Svenska Lant-
was devised and implemented with the männen, the cooperatively owned Project Number:
assistance of the LIFE programme. leader in the Swedish seed market. LIFE03 ENV/S/000600

Title: Thermal Seed Treatment –
The former technique placed seeds The Stiim project successfully test- An Integrated Approach …
in baths of hot water to kill off patho- ed a prototype treatment plant with
Beneficiary: LIFE03 ENV/S/000600
gens with low heat resistance. It was heating and cooling systems, sens-
a time-consuming, energy-intensive ing devices, system control software Total Budget: E1,431,000
and unpredictable process. Chemi- and transportation facilities. The LIFE Contribution: E254.000
cals, though not without their risks, system was capable of processing
Period: 01-Jan-2003 to 30-June-2005
were a viable and attractive alterna- 30 tons of cereal seeds per hour and
tive. The use of chemicals, however, is expected to reduce use of seed Website:
could be harmful to groundwater and treatment chemicals by some 2.5 Contact: Lage Ringstad
eco-systems and posed health risks, tons of active ingredients per year –
especially to employees in the sector equivalent to 4% of Sweden’s annual
and animals. use of these chemicals.

Best2006.indd 28 24/10/06 14:22:45
Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 29
LIFE03 ENV/S/000596

Waste management
The Commission’s Thematic Strategy on the Prevention and Recycling of

Waste is one of the seven thematic strategies set by the Sixth Environmental

Action Programme (6th EAP). The approach to waste management is to

contribute to reducing the environmental impacts of using material resources

by avoiding waste generation (prevention) and increasing the amount of recy-

cling and recovery of materials and energy from the waste we produce. This

long-term policy is having significant results. Over the past ten years, the EU

has doubled the amount of municipal waste recycled to more than 80 million

tons per year, and several EU countries have managed to achieve recycling

rates for packaging waste of over 60%.

6th EAP

Best2006.indd 29 24/10/06 14:22:48
Waste management

PAROC-WIM: Recycling waste
boosts stone wool melting
The PAROC-WIM project developed an alternative recycling process for mixing waste with
cement to make briquettes. The new system fed process waste back into the melting furnace,
making optimal use of raw material, reducing harmful emissions and offering cost savings.

The main objective of the LIFE co- This waste is usually ground and
funded project was to minimise the mixed with cement to make briquet-
amount of waste from the manufac- tes. The machinery required for tur-
turing of stone wool by injecting the ning waste into briquettes represents
process waste, which is fine frac- a high investment cost and uses an
tioned material, into the melting fur- extra raw material, cement. As a result
nace. The Waste Injection into the of impurities in cement, melting bri-
stone wool Melting (WIM) process quettes creates high emissions of
developed a system for feeding the particulate matters and sulphur oxi-
waste material back into the des into the atmosphere.

ST OF T furnace. This new system
BE also allowed other fine The Paroc project

fractioned materials,
in particular fine frac- In this context Paroc, an interna-

tioned coke, to be fed tional company based in Vantaa,
into the furnace. As a Finland, that produces building
00 consequence, the sys- material, in particular mineral wool
5-2006 tem reduced the amount insulation, set about investigating
of fuel (mainly coke) needed an alternative use for the waste
to heat the furnace, thus lowe- material in its stone wool produc-
ring emissions resulting from bur- tion process.
ning coke.
The process was first introduced
The key environmental advantage of in Oulu, Finland, and the appara-
the project, however, is the reduc- tus used in that plant served as a
tion of waste. The total amount of prototype for the system implemen-
waste generated in the European ted at a larger plant in Hässleholm,
stone wool industry is estimated to Sweden. Teeth-ing problems at the
be between 160,000 – 480,000 tons, Swedish plant included needing
roughly 20-60% of product output. to replace a grinder with one that
Most waste is produced when the requires less maintenance. Howe- Cupola furnaces are used for melting
stone material.
molten material of the furnace – a ver, the team working on the project
mixture of different types of rock – has been able to overcome these
is spun into fibres. About 10-20% difficulties, and consequently the ving the process, it worked fine, and
of this material is not completely amount of waste material that is now we have more or less the solu-
turned into fibre and consequently recycled has steadily increased. tion,” he says. The company’s goal of
rejected from the production proc- 100% recycling is not unrealistic.
ess. A stone wool line with an annual Mats Olsson, technical support
wool production of 20,000 tons gen- manager for Paroc, says that it In Finland, the amount of waste
erates 2,000 to 4,000 tons of fiber- didn’t take long to optimise the pro- recycled has been lower than in
izing process waste per year. cess. “After about a year of impro- Sweden, but it is also increasing.

Best2006.indd 30 24/10/06 14:22:57
Waste management Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 31

The system’s design has needed to The advantages over briquetting Summary of WIM’s
take into account the limitations of the and other ways to recycle fibre environmental benefits
machinery and location, but improve- process waste as a new material
ments have been made to optimise are considerable. Depending on > It reduces the amount of land-filling
their use. “The time yield in Finland the sulphur content in the rock of waste from the production pro-
was low at first,” Olsson says, “but and cement used, making briquet- cess;
it has been improved now.” In fact, tes can cause an increase of about > It requires less coke as a result of
a year into the project, the plant at 50% in emissions of sulphur oxi- energy savings;
Oulu was already recycling nearly des. Another key advantage of the > The amount of gas emissions cau-
80% of the spinning waste as raw WIM process over briquetting is its sed by burning coke is reduced;
material corresponding to over 7% ease of implementation. Invest- > It saves natural resources (virgin
of the total amount of mineral raw ment in waste injection costs rou- rock, coke); and
materials. ghly a fifth of the amount of the > New possibilities for the use of fine
cost of the equipment required for fractioned raw materials have been
Refining the process making briquettes. created.

Results at the Swedish plant are A bright future
still improving. In 2005, 93% of the
total amount of waste (2,421 tons) Paroc says that WIM will be a
was recycled, a significant increase stand-ard feature of any new plants
on 88% of the previous year. Such that it will build. “Now we know it’s Fine fractioned materials can be fed
back into the melting furnace.
steady improvements represent enor- a commercially viable process,
mous savings over the course of the we will implement it at our other
project. At the beginning 50 kg of plants,” says Olsson. The Hässle-
waste per ton of product was injected holm plant was built in 1975, and
into the melting furnace. Now, double there was no problem introducing
that amount is recycled. the new system. “The process is a
simple one,” he says. “You don’t
Fuel savings are also considerable. need to build new plants. Maybe in
The energy required for melting is 10 years time, we will have it at all
dramatically reduced when raw our plants.”
materials are replaced with “pre-
melted materials”. Such energy The experience of implementing
conservation has the benefit of WIM in Finland and Sweden also
reducing the need for coke. In the offers the company a competitive Project Number:
Oulu prototype the use of coke has advantage. “Next time [the system LIFE02 ENV/FIN/000328
been reduced by 8%, when about is implemented], because we know Title: Waste Injection in the Stone
7% of raw material is replaced with how to make it, the costs will be Wool Melting Furnace
production waste. much less,” Olsson says.
Beneficiary: Paroc Group, Finland

The larger scale machinery in Häss- A final objective of the project is Total Budget: E871,000
leholm has made a greater reduction to make the system commercially
LIFE Contribution: E194,000
in coke consumption possible. The available to other stone wool produ-
replacement of 5% of pure raw mate- cers. It can be applied in the stone Period: 01-Dec-2001 to 30-Nov -2004
rial with production waste results in a wool producing industry where Website:
more than 10% reduction in the use cupola furnaces are used for melting com/about+us/customer+benefit/
of coke. Such a reduction of coke stone material. Also, in the context innovativeness/life.asp
consumption generates a significant of EU environmental policy, WIM can
Contact: Patrick Johansson
saving in the melting costs, as well as help meet targets for the reduction
a decrease in the emissions of carbon of waste and greenhouse gas emis-
dioxide and sulphur oxides. sions in a cost-effective way.

Best2006.indd 31 24/10/06 14:23:05
Waste management

GENPLAST: Integrated recycling
plant for agricultural plastics
With the aid of LIFE programme funding, Genplast demonstrated that plastic products could be
recycled as films for agricultural usage. The new technology reduces plastic waste and the
environmental impact of its disposal.

Screen-shot of the informative
The agricultural industry produces
GENPLAST website.
a large amount of plastic waste and
its disposal has great environmen-
tal consequences. Plastic waste is
commonly disposed of by incinera- LIFE project beneficiary Genplast, a
tion or by dumping in landfill sites in Spanish company that produces plas-
contravention of a European Directive tics for horticultural purposes, aimed
(99/31/EC)1 on the landfill of waste. to reduce this waste through recy-
cling at its plastic plant. The company
aimed to create new products using
recycled materials that are adapted to
the location in which they are used.
In this way, the lifespan of the used
material is maximised.
Transforming technology
The project designed a process that
uses recycling and transformation The project achieved its objective to
technology. It focused on the trans- construct a pilot agricultural plastic
formation of chippings – from the pet- recycling plant that can serve as a
rochemical industry or from the plant catalyst for the construction of similar
itself – as a raw material. plants in other European countries. It
demonstrated the technical and finan-
The environmental benefits of the cial viability of the innovative process
project included: for recycling plastic waste.

Project Number: > Eliminating 7,000 tons of abandoned Across Europe the use of plastics in
LIFE03 ENV/E/000076 or dumped plastic waste per year as the horticultural sector has grown
Title: Integrated recycling plant for well as removing the environmental in recent years and is producing an
agricultural plastics costs of transporting to landfill sites increasing amount of waste. The
such as emissions, noise, risks and lack of appropriate disposal of this
Beneficiary: Genplast, S.L., Spain
use of fossil fuels. waste in Spain and in other countries
Total Budget: E3,741,000 > Saving on consumption of non-re- emphasises the significant impact the
LIFE Contribution: E656,000 newable energy sources. technology could have.
> Reducing air pollution by avoiding
Period: 01-Jun-2003 to 31-May-2005
the need to produce new plastic Genplast is continuing the recycling
Website: and reducing the incidence of un- initiative of the LIFE project. It is also
Contact: Rafael Cuenca Caceres controlled waste material burning. developing an integrated waste man-
> Raising awareness of the problem of agement system for integrated plas-
Email: rafaelcuenca@genplast.
agricultural plastic waste manage- tic film production and transformation
ment. processes.

Best2006.indd 32 24/10/06 14:23:07
Waste management Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 33

REUSEOIL: Reducing hazardous
waste by recycling used oil filters
Regularly replacing used vehicle oil filters generates a high amount of hazardous waste.
The REUSEOIL project demonstrated an innovative recovery technique for used oil filters that
produces recyclable oil and metal.

Europe uses an estimated 250 million Results
oil filters a year, resulting in the dis-
posal of up to 150,000 tonnes of metal The project created a fully opera-
and 75,000 tonnes of oil. The disposal tional pilot plant for the treatment of
of such material is subject to strict EU used oil filters with a capacity of two
and national legislation. tonnes per hour. The plant consisted
of a bunker to receive used filters,
The REUSEOIL project aimed to grabber, conveyor belts, shredder,
separate this oil and metal waste for granulator, centrifuge, magnet as
reuse as recovered materials. Such well as supplementary facilities to
a practice is in line with the Coun- store the treated oil, metal and other
cil Directive on end-of-life vehicles hazardous components.
(2000/53/EC) 1 and Directives on
Bunker to receive used filters and
waste oils (5/439/EEC)2 and on land- The treatment of filters resulted in a
conveyor belt.
fills (99/31/EC) 3. The beneficiary, recovery rate of 99.5% of the metal
Swedish-owned company Ragn- component and 98% of oil. Remains
Sells, developed a new technique for consist of mostly filter paper with a
this process that generates cleaner low oil and metal content. Recov-
recyclable metal and waste oil, while ered metal and oil fractions are suf-
eliminating fluid nitrogen and emis- ficiently clean for both re-melting
sions of oil vapour. and regeneration.

The project was implemented in the The project also paid close atten-
following stages: tion to the filter collection system,
which is essential for improved
1. Pre-installation procedures. functioning of the process. The Project Number:
2. Construction and installation of the beneficiary is further developing the LIFE03 ENV/S/000596
recovery plant. process and considering extending Title: Recovery of used oil filters
3. Testing of the prototype, including the process to its branches in Esto- generating recyclable…
meticulous evaluation of measure- nia and Latvia.
Beneficiary: Ragn-Sells Specialav-
ment tests.
fall AB, Sweden
The results were communicated to
specific target groups such as suppli- Total Budget: E2,042,000
ers of oil filters, producers of motor LIFE Contribution: E442,000
vehicles and machines, hazardous
1 Period: 01-Sep-2003 to 30-May-2005
waste/elv_index.htm waste management and treatment
companies as well as local and Website:
waste/oil/consultation.htm national authorities, whose repre- Contact: Lena Stridh
3 sentatives were part of the project
waste/landfill_index.htm reference group.

Best2006.indd 33 24/10/06 14:23:13
Waste management

ENVACTCARB: Producing activated
carbon from xylite
The ENVACTCARB project developed a clean technology for producing activated carbon from
recovery of xylite waste from brown coal mining. Xylite-based activated carbon is an environmen-
tally friendly adsorbent that can be routinely used in the purification processes of gases or water.

higher adsorption capacity than con- 14 tons a year of carbon dioxide and
ventional activated carbon. The tech- generates approximately 15 tons of
nology itself is a non-polluting one. oxygen);
> A limit to the use of a waste material,
Romania supplies abundant amounts which adversely affects the combus-
of low-grade coal – known as xylite tion process in power plants;
– which due to its wood-like charac- > Prevention of air and soil pollution by
teristics is an excellent material for the the powders (fly ash) resulting from
production of adsorbents. Since the the incomplete combustion of xylite
launch of the project in 2002, the ben- at the power plants; and
eficiary, the Metallurgical Research > A decrease of wood flour and other
Institute (ICEM), together with its wastes produced by wood process-
partners, developed the technology ing, which represent precious renew-
of production of the activated carbon able raw materials in the process of
Prototype plant at Gorj County. from xylite that proved both techni- activated carbon manufacturing.
cally and economically viable.

Adsorbents are increasingly used Wide-reaching benefits
to purify gases and water. Among
them activated carbon, which effec- In the first stage, the beneficiary
tively attaches itself to particles, has engineered and installed a prototype
become highly popular. Demand for small-scale plant of nominal capac-
activated carbon has increased signif- ity of 50 tons of activated carbon
icantly in recent years – up 30% in the per year. The chosen location – Gorj
last decade – particularly as a result of County (a traditional mining area) Project Number:
the need to rapidly reach environmen- enjoys abundant local land-filled LIFE02 ENV/RO/000461
tal targets set in the EU sustainable xylite. In a further stage, the project Title: Activated carbon manufactur-
development policies. investigated ways to use the residual ing using xylite…
heat and refined the efficiency of the
Beneficiary: Metallurgical Research
The production of activated carbon technical processes.
Institute - ICEM
is therefore a promising industry, also
in terms of reusing mining waste and Turning this xylite into useful activated Total Budget: E699,000
addressing potential cleaning up liabil- carbon leads to significant environ-
LIFE Contribution: E328,000
ities of pollution. The objective of the mental benefits. These include:
project was to demonstrate a technol- > A reduction of beech wood defor- Period: 01-Jul-2002 to 30-Jun-2005
ogy to use the xylite as raw material estation (50 hectares of wood are Website:
for activated carbon production. The needed to produce 1,000 tons of SiteLife/index.html
result of the pilot action was xylite- activated carbon);
Contact: Georgeta Predeanu
based activated carbon, which is a > A further reduction of the greenhouse
uniformly porous structure that proved effect (1 ha wood consumes around Email:

Best2006.indd 34 24/10/06 14:23:21
Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 35

LIFE99 ENV/IT/000213
Integrated Product Policy
The Commission’s strategy on Integrated Product Policy (IPP) aims to reduce

the environmental impact of goods and services at the most relevant stages

of a product’s life-cycle. The approach covers all issues related to a product,

from its design and development, to the consumption of natural resources

as raw materials, its manufacture, assembly and transport, its marketing and

sale, its subsequent use and, finally, its recycling or disposal. An integrated

approach for products implies involving many different actors and stakeholders

along the product chain, aiming to improve the environmental performance of

the product. As part of this process, IPP seeks to promote the coordination

and exchange of information/knowledge between the relevant groups.

IPP strategy

Best2006.indd 35 24/10/06 14:23:23
Integrated Product
Policy projects

ECON-tainer: new container plant
at the Port of Rotterdam
The ECON-tainer project established a new container degassing and fumigation plant in
Rotterdam with the aim of eliminating methyl bromide emissions. It successfully demonstrated
four zero-emission techniques, two of which are economically viable.

The LIFE-supported project set up the The plant was completed at the end
world’s first zero-emission container of 2002 and became operational at
degassing and fumigation facility. The the beginning of 2003. Twelve new
project was implemented by Europe gas-tight chambers were built and
Combined Terminals (ECT), which equipped with the required heating,
handles 60% of containers passing conditioning and monitoring instal-
through the Port of Rotterdam, and lations, and four types of treatment
aimed to demonstrate a new environ- were performed:
mentally friendly technique for treat- 1. Treatment with the EcO2 QPS (Quar-
ing containers for pests. antine and pre-Shipment) heat treat-
ment. This technique was developed
ECON-tainer established four new to treat wood, and to stow wood
techniques at its new container plant. materials and packaging materials
In the start-up phase (2003-2004), it together with their goods.
reduced emissions of methyl bromide, 2. Gassing with methyl bromide in a
an odourless, colourless gas that is controlled environment. New zero emission container facility at
used to control several pests, in the 3. Treatment with EcO2 controlled the Port of Rotterdam.
Netherlands by approximately 15%. atmosphere technology. This tech-
Methyl bromide is harmful to humans nique is mainly used for pest control
and a significant ozone-depleting purposes in food stocks.
substance. 4. Degassing containers with methyl The Montreal Protocol calls for an end
bromide in a controlled environ- to the production of substances that
ment. deplete the ozone layer, and the new
FAO-guideline for regulating wood
Project Number: Zero-emission techniques packaging material in international
LIFE02 ENV/NL/000124 trade, ISPM15, is expected to lead to
Title: An environmental friendly All four zero-emission techniques an increase in the use of methyl bro-
cargo handling plant in the Port of used for gassing and degassing con- mide. The ECON-tainer project dem-
Rotterdam tainers were technically feasible; the onstrated that the EcO2 QPS heat
first two treatments were also eco- treatment is a certified and acceptable
Beneficiary: Europe Combined Ter-
nomically viable. The results of the alternative within ISPM15 for gassing
minals, the Netherlands
project have generated a lot of inter- with methyl bromide.
Total Budget: E2,999,600 national interest, particularly in view
LIFE Contribution: E623,000 of a recent regulation to cut down on
methyl bromide emissions. Delega-
Period: 01-Mar-2002 to 31-Dec-2004
tions from other European countries
Website: and North America visited the plant,
Contact: Jan Nater and the ports of Antwerp, Felixstowe
and Hamburg are considering setting
up similar facilities.

Best2006.indd 36 24/10/06 14:23:25
Integrated Product
Policy projects Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 37

CLEAN DECO: Green coatings
for taps
Galvanisation, used for example in chrome-plating of taps and other decorative components, is
very polluting. It produces alkaline and acid emissions, polluted effluents and sludge. But there is
a less-polluting alternative: physical vapour deposition (PVD), which has been used in industry for
more than two decades. The CLEAN DECO project sought to demonstrate how PVD techniques
could be applied to tap decoration processes.

PVD is a term covering a set of tech-
niques that use a vacuum chamber
to convert coating materials such
as titanium or chromium into an ion
vapour before coating surfaces with
the vaporised material. The project
beneficiary, based in Caselette,
Turin, had the skills to apply PVD
techniques through its specialist
subsi Genta-Platit, which was able PVD-coated taps can last 3-4 times
to offer thirty years’ experience and longer than galvanised ones.

relevant ISO certification.
ered in terms of durability of coated potential to be used for products such
The project aimed to show that PVD components. PVD coated taps were as jewellery, spectacles and tools.
for decorative plating would gener- found to last three to four times longer The technology is already being used
ate both environmental benefits and than galvanised ones. commercially, with tap components
be economically viable. With LIFE produced using PVD available on the
programme assistance, the benefici- Environmental benefits were com- market.
ary built a demonstration plant that it bined with cost benefits:
was hoped would reduce chromium
content in wastewater and in toxic > Raw material consumption de-
sludge; would lessen the reliance on creased by 80%.
chromium anhydride, a hazardous raw > Basic wastes were reduced by
material; and would save both energy 40%. Project Number:
and water. In addition, Genta-Platit > Chromium wastes were eliminated. LIFE00 ENV/IT/000213
aimed to show that PVD techniques > Considerably lower liquid volumes Title: Development of clean coating
could produce better quality finishes were required for the processes. technology pvd for decorative
compared to galvanisation, opening > Use of hazardous chemicals was applications…
up market opportunities. greatly reduced or even eliminated.
Beneficiary: Trattamenti Termici
Ferioli & Gianotti S.p.A., Italy
Less polluting and The success of the project ensured
longer-lasting interest among other manufacturers, Total Budget: E4,873,000
who asked to test their own tap com- LIFE Contribution: E1,005,000
The project achieved all of these goals. ponents in the demonstration plant.
Period: 01-Sep-2001 to 31-Aug-2004
Three decorative coating colours were European Union legislation discour-
tested – gold, grey and anthracite – aging use of dangerous substances Website:
with similar characteristics in terms of such as chromium is also contribut- Contact: Daniele Franchi
look and shine to galvanised coatings. ing to the interest in cleaner and more
However a major benefit was discov- efficient techniques, which have the

Best2006.indd 37 24/10/06 14:23:27
Integrated Product
Policy projects

GPPnet: Networking to promote
green public procurement
The GPPnet project promoted green public procurement (GPP) among Italian local authorities,
providing them with a handbook to integrate environmental requirements into tendering proce-
dures and with guidelines for developing GPP action plans.

Public authorities spend around thereby set an example to influence Based on the project’s results, a
16% of the EU’s gross domestic the behaviour of other organisations national working group on GPP was
product. By using their purchasing and individuals. established in Bologna in March 2005.
power, they have the potential to not The working group has been invited
only improve their own environmen- A 300-page handbook was published by the Ministry of the Environment
tal performance, but even to influ- containing background information on to participate in the consultations for
ence the market for ‘greener’ goods GPP and describing its step-by-step the drawing up of the National Plan on
and services itself. GPP can cover introduction into a public adminis- GPP. Under the auspices of the Ital-
areas such as energy-efficient com- tration’s procedures. The publication ian Agenda 21 Coordination agency1,
puters, office stationary and furni- includes a set of environmental crite- it is expected that the results of the
ture made of renewable or recycled ria to be included in calls for tender, GPPnet project will be widely dissem-
materials, eco-labelled appliances, together with relevant procedural inated to local and provincial govern-
organic food for canteens, electric- instructions and detailed form-sheets. ments in Italy.
ity from renewable energy sources, The environmental specifications for
municipal vehicles that run on alter- 189 goods and service were compiled
native fuels and environmentally from 14 existing ecological labels 1 ambiente@provincia.
certified suppliers. and from guidelines established by
national bodies such as the environ-
Nevertheless, only a small minority of ment agencies in the United States
public organisations systematically and Denmark.
consider environmental criteria when
selecting suppliers, service provid- The handbook is an excellent instru-
ers and contractors. One of the main ment for public administrations
barriers to GPP is the lack of skills seeking to introduce GPP and has
and information among public pro- been formally adopted by the local
curement officers for including envi- authorities involved in the project. Project Number:
ronmental requirements into tender- Politicians and executives across LIFE02 ENV/IT/000023
ing procedures. The GPPnet project all departments of the Province of Title: GPPnet Green Public
therefore aimed to provide public Cremona were encouraged to pro- Procurement Network
authorities with simple rules for their mote its dissemination within their
Beneficiary: Amministrazione
procurement decision-making and administrations. Suppliers and
Provinciale di Cremona, Italy
processes. service providers were also kept
informed of developments, in order Total Budget: E850,000
National network on GPP to be able to comply with upcoming LIFE Contribution: E398,000
contract stipulations. All the public
Period: 01-Dec-2002 to 30-Nov-2004
The initiative involved the creation of administrations involved prepared
a GPP network with the participation calls for tender in accordance with Website:
of the project beneficiary, the Provin- the GPP manual’s recommenda- Contact: Pesaro Mara
cial Administration of Cremona, and tions, in sectors such as furniture,
13 municipalities seeking to improve paper, office equipment, services
their environmental performance and and public works.

Best2006.indd 38 24/10/06 14:23:28
Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2005-2006 I p. 39

Available LIFE publications
LIFE-Focus brochures Other publications

A number of LIFE publications are Alien species and nature conservation Best LIFE-Environment Projects 2004-
available on the LIFE website: in the EU - The role of the LIFE pro- 2005 (2005, 44 pp. – ISBN 92-79-00889-7)
gramme (2004 - 56 pp. – ISBN 92-894-
LIFE and European forests (2006 - 68pp. 6022-9 – ISSN 1725-5619) infoproducts/bestlifeenv/bestenv.pdf
ISBN 92-79-02255-5 - ISSN 1725-5619) infoproducts/alienspecies_en.pdf LIFE-Environment 1992 – 2004
infoproducts/forests/forest_lr.pdf “Demonstrating excellence in envi-
Industrial pollution, European solu- ronmental innovation” (2005, 124 pp. –
LIFE in the City – Innovative solutions tions: clean technologies - LIFE and ISBN 92-894-7699-3 – ISSN 1725-5619)
for Europe’s urban environment (2006, the Directive on integrated pollution
64pp. - ISBN 92-79-02254-7 – ISSN prevention and control (IPPC Direc- infoproducts/bilanlife/lifeenv1992_
1725-5619) tive) (2003 - 32 pp. – ISBN 92-894- 2004_en.pdf 6020-2 – ISSN 1725-5619)
infoproducts/urban/urban_lr.pdf LIFE-Environment in Action. 56 new suc-
infoproducts/cleantechnologies_en.pdf cess stories for Europe’s environment
Integrated management of Natura 2000 (2001 -131 pp. – ISBN 92-894-0272-5)
sites (2005 - 48 pp. – ISBN 92-79-00388-7) LIFE and agri-environment supporting Natura 2000 - Experience from the infoproducts/successstories2001_
products/managingnatura_highres.pdf LIFE programme (2003 - 72 pp. – ISBN en.pdf
92-894-6023-7 – ISSN N° 1725-5619)
LIFE, Natura 2000 and the military LIFE-Environment Projects 2006 compi-
(2005 - 86 pp. – ISBN 92-894-9213-9 infoproducts/agrienvironmentreport_ lation (2006, 56 pp.-ISBN 92-79-02786-7)
– ISSN 1725-5619) en.pdf infoproducts/lifeenvcompilation_06.pdf
infoproducts/lifeandmilitary_en.pdf LIFE for Natura 2000 - 10 years imple-
menting the regulation (2003 - 108 pp. LIFE-Nature Projects 2006 compilation
LIFE for birds - 25 years of the Birds – ISBN 92-894-4337-5) (2006, 67 pp. – ISBN 92-79-02788-3)
Directive: the contribution of LIFE-
Nature projects (2004 - 48 pp. – ISBN infoproducts/lifepournatura2000_en.pdf infoproducts/lifenatcompilation_06.pdf
92-894-7452-1 – ISSN 1725-5619) A sustainable approach for the envi- LIFE-Third Countries Projects 2006
infoproducts/lifeforbirds_en.pdf ronment - LIFE and the Community compilation (2006, 20 pp. – ISBN 92-
Eco-Management and Audit Scheme 79-02787-5)
The air we breathe - LIFE and the Euro- (EMAS) (2003 - 32 pp. – ISBN 92-894- ronment/life/infoproducts/lifetcycompi-
pean Union clean air policy (2004 - 32 pp. 0543-0) lation_06.pdf
– ISBN 92-894-7899-3 – ISSN 1725-5619) infoproducts/emas_en.pdf LIFE-Environment Projects 2005 compi-
infoproducts/focusair/lifeair_hr_en.pdf lation (2005, 97 pp.-ISBN 92-79-00104-3)
Water, an essential resource - LIFE
LIFE-Nature: communicating with and the new European water policy infoproducts/lifeenvcompilation_05_
stakeholders and the general public (2002 - 28 pp. – ISBN 92-894-0538-4) lowres.pdf
- Best practice examples for Natura
2000 (2004 - 72 pp. – ISBN 92-894-7898- infoproducts/water_en.pdf LIFE-Nature Projects 2005 compilation
5 – ISSN 1725-5619) http://ec.europa. (2005, 55 pp. – ISBN 92-79-00102-7)
naturecommunicating_lowres_en.pdf infoproducts/lifenatcompilation_05_
A cleaner, greener Europe - LIFE and
the European Union waste policy A number of printed copies of cer- LIFE-Third Countries Projects 2005
(2004 - 28 pp. – ISBN 92-894-6018-0 tain LIFE publications are available compilation (2005, 19 pp. – ISBN 92-
– ISSN 1725-5619) and can be ordered free-of-charge 79-00103-5) at: ronment/life/infoproducts/lifetcycompi-
infoproducts/lifewaste_en.pdf env-informa/ lation_05_lowres.pdf

Best2006.indd 39 24/10/06 14:23:29
Name LIFE (“L’Instrument Financier pour l’Environnement” / The financial instrument for the environment)
Type of intervention co-financing of actions in favour of the environment in the twenty-five Member States of
the European Union, in the candidate countries who are associated to LIFE and in certain third countries bordering
the Mediterranean and the Baltic Sea.

LIFE is made up of three thematic components: “LIFE-Nature”, “LIFE-Environment” and “LIFE-Third countries”.

> with a view to sustainable development in the European Union, contribute to the drawing up, implementation and
updating of Community policy and legislation in the area of the environment;
> explore new solutions to environmental problems on a Community scale.

Beneficiaries any natural or legal person, provided that the projects financed meet the following general criteria:
> they are of Community interest and make a significant contribution to the general objectives;
> they are carried out by technically and financially sound participants;
> they are feasible in terms of technical proposals, timetable, budget and value for money.

Types of project

> Eligible for LIFE-Environment are innovative pilot and demonstration projects which bring environment-related
and sustainable development considerations together in land management, which promote sustainable water and
waste management or which minimise the environmental impact of economic activities, products and services.
LIFE-Environment also finances preparatory projects aiming at the development or updating of Community
environmental actions, instruments, legislation or policies.
> Eligible for LIFE-Nature are nature conservation projects which contribute to maintaining or restoring natural habitats
and/or populations of species in a favourable state of conservation within the meaning of the “Birds” (79/409/EEC)
and “Habitats” (92/43/EEC) Community Directives and which contribute to the establishment of the European network
of protected areas – NATURA 2000. LIFE-Nature also finances “co-op” projects aiming to develop the exchange of
experiences between projects.
> Eligible for LIFE-Third countries are projects which contribute to the establishment of capacities and administrative
structures needed in the environmental sector and in the development of environmental policy and action programmes
in some countries bordering the Mediterranean and the Baltic Sea.

Implementation National authorities in the Member States or third countries send the Commission the proposals of
projects to be co-financed (for LIFE-Environment preparatory projects, the applicants send their proposals directly to the
Commission). The Commission sets the date for sending the proposals annually. It monitors the projects financed and
supports the dissemination of their results. Accompanying measures enable the projects to be monitored on the ground.

Period covered (LIFE III) 2000-2006.
Funds from the Community approximately EUR 638 million for 2000-2004 and EUR 317 million for 2005-2006.
European Commission – Environment Directorate-General
LIFE Unit – BU-9 02/1 – 200 rue de la Loi – B-1049 Brussels – Fax: +32 2 292 17 87

European Commission
Life Focus / Best Life-Environment projects 2005-2006
Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities

2006 - 40p - 21 x 28 cm
ISBN 92-79-02123-0
ISSN 1725-5619

ISSN 1725-5619

Best2006.indd 40 24/10/06 14:23:32