- The recycling industry is currently experiencing rapid growth, partly due to political focus on waste management in most parts of the world and partly due to rising consumer awareness. This is a positive trend, and in recent years we’ve made it a strategic business area at Port of Aalborg, explains Claus Holstein, CEO at Port of Aalborg, and he continues: ‘But we’re a young industry which is only just beginning to find a foothold, and we’re trying to support it as well as we can.
There’s huge potential for recycling and utilising waste across Europe’s borders. The latest figures from the Danish Environmental Protection Agency show that Denmark imports 1.15 million tonnes of waste, mainly from the UK, Italy, Germany, Sweden and Norway – in that order. Waste imports from the UK account for 40% of the total volume, and this is due to the fact that the UK has a general lack of capacity to treat its own waste.
The imported waste is primarily used to improve energy efficiency and for recycling of metals and other non-organic materials. The waste products remaining after the incineration processes, such as ash and slag, are largely used for new production of cement and for substrates for road construction.
Because waste management both benefits the environment and generates jobs, an increasing number of companies now regard waste as a valuable raw material. Recycling is therefore good for the economy and for the environment, too.
This increased focus on recycling has led to Port of Aalborg establishing a specific site for eco-businesses that collect and process various types of waste and waste products and then sell them on for recycling purposes. This type of enterprise requires a good deal of space, and there are also special requirements for the sites used because waste management can mean noise, dust and heavy traffic.
- An average of 30 lorries carrying scrap metal arrive at the section in Aalborg every day, and it’s a great advantage that we’re situated at the East Port, close to the motorway network so that the lorries don’t need to travel through the centre of town, explains Jes Andersen, Head of Operations at H.J. Hansen, which has a solid presence at the port of Aalborg in order to be able to cover the area benefit Skagen, Thisted and Randers Nord.
- Five of our nine branches across Denmark are also located at ports. This gives us a range of transport benefits – within Denmark but also when it comes to exports, because we export the great majority of the scrap metal we upcycle to Turkey. Once every three weeks, we collect a shipment of approximately 30,000 tonnes of shredded scrap from our various branches and then ship it out.
H.J. Hansen in Aalborg handles around 55–60,000 tonnes of scrap metal a year and this generates a lot of traffic, both on land and at sea. The location of their branches is therefore crucial to their success.
Eco-businesses with a connection to Port of Aalborg include:
- H.J. Hansen
- Jysk Jordhåndtering
- Jørgen Rasmussen Gruppen
- Kingo Carlsen
- Kærholm Diamantboring
- Marius Pedersen
- Melgaard Miljø
- RGS Nordic
- Aage Vestergaard Larsen
- Aalborg Portland
- Aalborg Recycling
- Green Energy Supply
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