Innovative soil washing facility launched in Prevalje
The soil remediation facility was built as part of a EUR 2.2m project entitled Life ReSoil and has just completed a trial run.
So far, the facility cleared about 50 tonnes of soil for the garden next to it, according to Life ReSoil head Neža Finžgar. She added that the results of initial tests were even better than expected.
The project will end at the end of the year but the facility will be relaunched to demonstrate the technology for potential buyers.
The facility will also be at the disposal of the local communities of the Mežiška Valley, which has high heavy metal pollution levels due to a now defunct lead mine.
The chemical used in the process, EDTA, may be used used several times, said Finžgar, adding that about a cubic metre of waste has accumulated so far. Apart from the heavy metals, the waste material also contains lime and polysaccharides.
Possible ways to reuse the waste material will be examined by researchers in the future, according to Finžgar.
The technology may be used on any kind of soil polluted with lead and other elements. It has sparked great interest among potential buyers, above all from the US, Canada and Japan, according to a press release from Arhel and Envit.
According to the developers, the technology is completely safe: it does not produce emissions because it is a closed-circuit procedure, it is sustainable and innovative.
Nonetheless, there was an outcry among the locals against its construction, which was probably why the facility was also required to get an environmental permit before the trial run was launched.