Emirates Global Aluminium has started up a new AED15m pre-treatment and crusher facility for spent potlining (SPL) in a step forward for the recycling of industrial waste.
SPL, the used inner lining of reduction cells in which aluminium is smelted, is one of the most significant waste streams in the aluminium industry. EGA has worked with UAE cement companies since 2010 to develop the potential of SPL to replace some fuel and refractory materials required in cement manufacturing. Last year, EGA supplied over 41,000 tonnes of SPL to UAE cement companies, reducing stockpiles from previous years and making EGA a global leader in the re-use of this industrial waste. Worldwide, the aluminium industry produces over 1m tonnes of spent pot lining every year according to industry experts, with much kept in indefinite storage without economic use. The new pre-treatment and crusher facility is located at EGA’s Al Taweelah site, and is the largest in the Gulf region.
EGA CEO Abdulla Kalban said: “SPL is a global challenge for our industry, but over the past decade at EGA we have been able to turn this waste into value in the UAE. I am pleased that EGA now has its own infrastructure to transform SPL into a useful industrial feedstock, securing this solution and our partnerships with UAE cement companies for the long term.” EGA previously worked with specialist third parties to process SPL before delivery to cement companies, increasing transport distances and processing costs.
EGA is also supplying most of its carbon dust, another important by-product stream, to UAE cement companies for use as a fuel. In addition, EGA sends some dross waste for processing to recover aluminium. A new dross processing facility to enable all this waste to be re-used is currently under construction by a third party near EGA’s Al Taweelah site.
EGA’s waste generation excluding SPL was reduced by 15% last year compared with 2017.