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A Toxics-Free Future


Solutions for the Destruction of POPs Wastes

IPEN Dioxin, PCB and Waste Working Group

December 2012

Although the incineration of old POPs stocks is still the most used destruction technology, it cannot be considered "clean", there is concern about its high costs, comprehensive information on its destruction efficiency is missing and it is not transportable. A technology that is transportable, locally applicable, sustainable and destroys obsolete POPs at a reasonable cost would mean a breakthrough in the destruction of these chemicals (IHPA, 2008). Innovative non-combustion technologies have the potential to become such technologies, however, specific conditions have to be guaranteed:

  • long-term resource availability,
  • strong environmental awareness and
  • sound scientific research sustained bypolitical support and appropriate fund- ing to ensure continuous technological progress.

Also, as some necessary information (e.g. potential PCDD/Fs formation during the destruction process) is currently provided almost exclusively by the develop- ing and selling companies (Weber, 2007), independent evaluations of the technologies should be conducted and data made publicly available. The feasibility and durability of the technologies should be proven by real field demonstration tests in countries/regions with limited infrastructure and lack of necessary conventional supply services (IHPA, 2008).

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