Professor Castaldi, in collaboration with former CCL and EEC alumnus Jeffrey LeBlanc, publish in Mechanical Engineering Magazine (Waste to Energy as a Substitute for Landfills – ASME) on the attributes of waste to energy for sustainable waste management. The article was also co-authored by Mr. Tony Licata, Fellow ASME. That publication resulted in the interest of other articles (Sustainable Plastics) that cite some of the main benefits.
Anna Naumova is an undergraduate student at the City College of New York and is graduating in Spring 2021 from the mechanical engineering program. She was awarded the Floyd Hasselriis Educational Support for her interest and work in solid waste management at the Earth Engineering Center (EEC|CCNY). Anna was involved in work investigating methods of repurposing ash coming from Waste-to-Energy plants into a product for the construction market.
Professor Castaldi has been interviewed on some of the thermal conversion aspects related to waste film plastic. EEC has done some research in the past related to non-recycled plastic waste and recently focused on film plastic (i.e. wrapping, flexible contaniers, etc) demonstrating that thermal conversion processes are likely the best technology for treating that stream thus diverting from landfills. For example, The range for the lower heating value for plastic waste was experimentally determined by EEC|CCNY to be between 22.9 and 41.0 MJ/kg (19.7-35.3 MMBtu/ton). Evan after long term exposure the original heating value was reduced by less than 5% making thermal conversion technologies well-positioned to recover the inherent energy and residual metals. Please see the excellent article done by Karine Vann of Waste Dive (The unfulfilled promises of plastic film recycling | Waste Dive)
CCL researcher Anjeza Arapi won the 2020 Floyd Hasselriis Awards offered by ASME Materials and Energy Recovery (MER) Division for her work in solid waste management. Anjeza is a graduate student at the City College of New York and is expected to graduate in Spring 2021. Anjeza is currently an associate at the Earth Engineering Center at the City College of New York and is involved in researching the mitigation of halogenic emissions from a waste-to-energy facility. She is developing different mitigation techniques by understanding the behavior of iodine in combustion facilities as well as using analytical methods for quantifying this unregulated pollutant. She has also been involved in a technical assessment on air pollution control technologies. Congratulations Anjeza!
CCL Congratulates Vishal Jadwani who was part of the KTH-CCNY Sweden-USA student exchange program. Vishal worked with CCL during the summer for 2019 and focused on developing a testing and validation method to quantify and eliminate unexpected halogen emission plumes from waste to energy systems. Vishal worked close with CCL members and EEC’s resident research engineering, Anjeza Arapi. Vishal joined Northvolt’s Quality Control team for incoming materials for battery manufacturing. Northvolt is working towards making greener batteries for sustainable future.
Recently a published article in Annual Reviews in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering by Professor Castaldi was more brought to life through Knowable Magazine’s story by Michael Waldrop. The article by Castaldi entitled “Perspectives on Sustainable Waste Management” provided an overview of how waste management is done and how it can be made to be more sustainable.
You can find the Knowable Magazine article at: https://knowablemagazine.org/article/food-environment/2020/recycling-meets-reality-feature
In addition, a complementary video produced by Bridget Hunnicutt and her team centered on the research done at EEC|CCNY and CCL focused on thermal conversion of residual waste that cannot be recycled. To view the video please go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3zI4xXGmNPw&t=186s
We are very happy that the work being done at EEC|CCNY and CCL is making a real impact and being disseminated through different outlets that are dedicated to presenting the facts of our current waste management systems and how they can be improved.
Recently Enerkem was featured on CNBC. EEC has been working with Enerkem for the past several years on technical due diligences and some modeling and performance evaluations. We are happy to see that Enerkem is getting some visibility and wish them continued success.
Please watch the video here.
Unfortunately, we must postpone the upcoming 2020 EEC|WTERT Biennial Conference that is scheduled for October 22nd & 23rd, 2020. Currently, there is no firm new date, but it is anticipated that the conference will occur in the Fall of 2021. We have delayed this decision for as long as possible to incorporate the most updated current information and projections related to the pandemic.
Unfortunately, New York City is currently operating on a limited schedule with 25% in-door dining permitted and most hotels closed until December of 2020. Furthermore, The City College of New York, where the conference is scheduled to be held, is conducting classes mostly via remote format and has requested limiting on-campus events as much as possible. In addition, we are aware that most private companies are not permitting or heavily limiting travel for non-critical business purposes. We were optimistic early in the summer that NYC would be more open, as evidenced back then that Broadway was planning to open near September 4th, however those expectations never materialized.
We received enough abstracts, combined with invited presenters, to have a conference that would have been slightly more expanded than the previous two held at CCNY in 2016 and 2018. We seriously considered moving to an on-line format to allow the invited speakers and those who submitted abstracts to present their findings and thoughts. Yet after careful consideration that included participating, monitoring, and soliciting feedback on a virtual event, it has been determined that it would not be effective. An important factor in this determination is the international participation that our conference normally enjoys. For example, in 2018 there were a total of 12 countries represented that spanned several time zones (Belgium, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Korea, Sudan, UK and US). Additionally, an important component of our conference is the person-to-person interaction that allows attendees to make new connections and collaborations that normally would not occur in other settings. That interaction cannot happen in a virtual environment and the spontaneous discussions on the scientific topics also cannot occur via an on-line format.
Therefore, please keep our conference on your mind. We will be sending reminders and announcements as we develop more clarity. Stay safe. We look forward to seeing you next year.
Anjeza Arapi, Snehesh Ail, Marco J. Castaldi
Nannette Hernandez, a former researcher at EEC, has been featured in the Fall 2020 ChE newsletter. The write-up details her career path after graduating from CCNY and how she is continuing her support for our ChE department.
The newsletter can be accesses with this link.
Recently Prof. Castaldi virtually presented a Keynote lecture on some results of research conducted during the pandemic on health impacts of WTE facilities to the 2020 BEEM conference attendees. This presentation is a brief overview of a more detailed document that will be published in the near future. That Title and abstract are below and the presentation, along with others that presented at BEEM. The link to the presentation (8KEN-19) is here https://app.xsync.co/onlineconference/5f4349e23d966d3214be0979/schedule/5f4f0847e222d224df54e0d6
A review of the health impacts of WTE facilities
Abstract: There has been considerable progress made with waste to energy (WTE) facilities over the past several years. Many countries that previously did not have WTE facilities have begun to construct them as they recognize the benefit of WTE for sustainable waste management. Those newly constructed facilities have created visibility for the WTE industry locally and worldwide. Some of that visibility has resulted in public concern over health impacts of WTE facilities based on outdated or incorrect information. There is a large body of scientific and engineering literature in the public domain that quantitatively documents the performance of WTE facilities and impacts of adhering to a sustainable waste management strategy. The longstanding and well-documented scientific consensus is that human health is not adversely impacted by WTE. As far back as 20 years ago, a National Research Council report in 2000 stated that pollutants such as particulate matter, lead, mercury, and dioxins and furans from well-run WTE facilities are expected to contribute little to environmental concentrations or to health risks. The presentation will cover the latest information in the peer-reviewed literature on health impacts of WTE facilities.
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