As part of the Luhansk National Forum «Waste Management in Ukraine: Law, Economy, Technology,» the second stage of new landfill for municipal solid waste (MSW) has opened in Alexandrovsk town, Luhansk region, the Information-Analytical Bulletin of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine informs.

This is one of the best reclaimed landfills in Ukraine — a biogas production project that is expected to reduce of greenhouse gas emissions. In the future, the collected gas shall be used for production of heat and electricity. 

Annual volume of burnt gas is 5.724 million cubic meters. Following the utilization of biogas, scope of pollutants emitted into atmosphere from the landfill was halved. Thus, according to experts, during the 1st half of 2013, harmful emissions into atmosphere were reduced in Luhansk region by 8,400 tons. 

The project envisions another opportunity for biogas utilization at the unit for fuel production (refueling of vehicles) or generation of electricity. 

Analysts say Ukraine produces 14 million tons of waste a year, about 350 kg of waste per capita. Also, actually processed is only 5% of waste; 95% is transported to landfills. 

According to experts, most of the landfills are overloaded. They have violated their design parameters by scope of accumulated waste and today need significant funding for reconstruction.

Under the correct approach, landfills of municipal solid waste can change their threatening meaning to a safe one and open new economic prospects for renewable gas sources. 

Any solid waste landfill is a large biochemical reactor, whose depths generate biogas due to anaerobic decomposition of vegetable or animal waste in the course of operation and for several decades after shutdown. Biogas is methane/carbon dioxide mix of varying proportions (30–70% of methane and 70–30% of carbon dioxide). Emissions of other gases are negligible, usually below 1%. 

Experts say one of major challenges faced by all municipal facilities is high-quality and comprehensive utilization of waste. And this problem is also being actively resolved in Luhansk region. For example, this summer, the environmental project «Clean City» was launched in Luhansk to implement a system of separate waste collection. Today, under the Regional Waste Management Program, the local authorities build new and reclaim the decommissioned landfills in Sverdlovsk and Popasnaya cities. New landfills have been commissioned in Lutuginsky and Antratsitovsky districts. 

Government analysts say Ukraine will benefit from the experience of leading European countries. Under a pilot project, recycling plants will be built in 10 towns across the country and process at least 16% of waste generated in Ukraine.

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