Development of municipal solid waste classification in Korea based on fossil carbon fraction

J Air Waste Manag Assoc. 2015 Oct;65(10):1256-60. doi: 10.1080/10962247.2015.1079563.

Abstract

Environmental problems and climate change arising from waste incineration are taken quite seriously in the world. In Korea, the waste disposal methods are largely classified into landfill, incineration, recycling, etc. and the amount of incinerated waste has risen by 24.5% from 2002. In the analysis of CO₂emissions estimations of waste incinerators fossil carbon content are main factor by the IPCC. FCF differs depending on the characteristics of waste in each country, and a wide range of default values are proposed by the IPCC. This study conducted research on the existing classifications of the IPCC and Korean waste classification systems based on FCF for accurate greenhouse gas emissions estimation of waste incineration. The characteristics possible for sorting were classified according to FCF and form. The characteristics sorted according to fossil carbon fraction were paper, textiles, rubber, and leather. Paper was classified into pure paper and processed paper; textiles were classified into cotton and synthetic fibers; and rubber and leather were classified into artificial and natural. The analysis of FCF was implemented by collecting representative samples from each classification group, by applying the 14C method, and using AMS equipment. And the analysis values were compared with the default values proposed by the IPCC. In this study of garden and park waste and plastics, the differences were within the range of the IPCC default values or the differences were negligible. However, coated paper, synthetic textiles, natural rubber, synthetic rubber, artificial leather, and other wastes showed differences of over 10% in FCF content. IPCC is comprised of largely 9 types of qualitative classifications, in emissions estimation a great difference can occur from the combined characteristics according with the existing IPCC classification system by using the minutely classified waste characteristics as in this study.

Implications: Fossil carbon fraction (FCF) differs depending on the characteristics of waste in each country; and a wide range of default values are proposed by the IPCC. This study conducted research on the existing classifications of the IPCC and Korean waste classification systems based on FCF for accurate greenhouse gas emissions estimation of waste incineration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Carbon / analysis*
  • Environmental Monitoring / methods*
  • Fossil Fuels / analysis*
  • Fossil Fuels / classification
  • Fossils
  • Incineration*
  • Republic of Korea
  • Solid Waste / analysis*
  • Solid Waste / classification
  • Waste Management

Substances

  • Fossil Fuels
  • Solid Waste
  • Carbon