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172: Bottle Factory

Problem:

The major environmental impact of glass production is caused by atmospheric emissions from melting activities. The combustion of natural gas/fuel oil and the decomposition of raw materials during the melting lead to the emission of CO2.

Sulphur dioxide (SO2) from the fuel and/or from decomposition of sulphate in the batch materials can contribute to acidification. Nitrogen oxides (NOx) due to the high melting temperatures and in some cases due to decomposition of nitrogen compounds in the batch materials also contribute to acidification and formation of smog.

Solution:

Furnace of the Future.

In March 2020, the 20 most important European packaging glassmakers have come together around the “Furnace of the future” project to invent less energy-consuming ovens and improve their environmental footprint.


The 20 companies in the Furnace of the future project are:

This new generation of furnace will operate using an oxycombustion process and 80% renewable electricity to replace gas. With this new technology, the industry will be able to produce more than 300 tonnes per day in different shades, using high levels of recycled glass.

Ardagh, the second largest producer of glass packaging in the world, will be the first to test this technology at their factory in Oberkirchen (Low saxony), Germany. The pilot will be built in 2022 and an evaluation of the first results is already scheduled for 2023.

Discover Solution 173: A global carbon tax

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