“This project was born of the vision shared by OFMRS and STADLER on waste management. This vision has led to a technological proposal and the development of a new operating model,”, says Natalya Duarte. “The aim was to recover different types of recyclable packaging and materials and re-distribute them back into various production chains, as many times as possible. This innovative business and management model makes such projects feasible, as well as making them more profitable due to the highly-efficient sorting process and high purity levels of the materials.”
Crisóforo Arroyo, General Manager for the La Perseverancia landfill, underlines his confidence in STADLER: “Our decision to invest in the project with STADLER was not only based on their reputation as a serious leading German technology firm in the sector, but also on the fact that this comprehensive project was sustainable and took domestic market conditions into account.”
“This new plant fulfils our objectives on many levels: generating a purer biogas; reducing the carbon footprint; strategic alliances with firms that recycle and transform recycled input materials into green packaging; re-distribution of recycled input materials within a circular economy; and the creation of shared value based on sustainability and quality,” adds Crisóforo Arroyo.
“Our aim is to turn this project into a knowledge exchange platform for the various parties involved in the recycling chain and an ongoing laboratory where new waste management processes can be tested across the country,” says Natalya Duarte.
OFMRS, a process based on automation and technology
Within this circular economy-based approach, the most important points that set OFMRS apart are its high degree of automation (among the highest in the country), its ability to sort by type of polymer and color, and its management model.
With facilities spanning 3,800 m 2 , and a maximum output of 640-700 tonnes/day, OFMRS sorts, classifies, compacts and commercialises MSW, recovering materials including cardboard, paper, carton packaging, plastic, glass, and ferrous and non-ferrous materials. Biogas is also recovered from organic waste and fed to two Guascorde 1 mW power generators with a power output of 2mW. The energy generated is supplied to two companies in the state of Mexico through the power supply network owned by state-owned power utility CFE.
The plant’s automated closed-loop system comprises ten cutting-edge machines and thirty-five recirculating conveyor belts.
The process starts with reception of the MSW, which undergoes several processing stages, including the removal of ‘non-recoverable’ waste. It is then sorted into three groups: firstly, fine, metal and organic waste, which is sent to a reject container; secondly, flat or 2D waste (cardboard, paper, plastic wrap and carton packaging); and finally, bottled or 3D waste (PET, HDPE, PP, carton packaging and aluminium). The last two types of waste are forwarded to a manual sorting area. Finally, the conveyor belt feeds the materials into the compactor and the final product is ready: recoverable waste bundles (cardboard, paper, plastic wrap, carton packaging, PET, HDPE, PP and aluminium).
In the spotlight: the circular economy and environmental protection
In order to improve work practices, productivity, Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) and environmental protection, OFMRS has been operating to international ISO 9001 quality, ISO 45001 OHS, and ISO 1400 environmental standards since mid-2020.