- Pennsylavnia's York County Solid Waste Authority is constructing an ash recovery facility at its existing Resource Recovery Center in Manchester Township.
- The center handles more than 400,000 tons of waste through combustion every year, resulting in about 166,000 tons of ash. York Reduction Systems will be running the ash recovery facility with proprietary "wet-separation" technology.
- Construction on the $14 million facility will begin this month and paid for by the authority's reserve fund. Once operational, the facility will employ an estimated 10 full-time workers.
York County's Resource Recovery Center has been open since 1989 and can power roughly 20,000 homes per day. The facility is operated by Covanta, which recently signed a new contract to continue operations through 2035. At the time, the county announced plans for $30 million in infrastructure upgrades.
Pennsylvania's Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority recently entered into a long-term contract with Dutch company Inashco to recover metals from residual ash at a proposed $14 million processing facility. Republic Services also opened a new ash recovery facility in Washington earlier this summer that will recycle 46,200 tons of ferrous metals and 42,900 tons of non-ferrous metals over an estimated 10-year period.
Scientists and engineers hope that these projects are the beginning of a new phase in U.S. ash recovery that can find more beneficial uses for the material. Many European countries have already been recovering metals and using the ash as aggregate in construction material for years. An upcoming report from the the Solid Waste Association of North America plans to highlight the growing potential in this field.