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Eni and Veritas to transform Venetian waste into energy resources

In Italy, oil and gas major Eni S.p.A and Veritas, a multiutility that collects, recycles and treats waste in the 51 municipalities of the metropolitan area of Venice, have signed an agreement to promote the circular economy by reusing waste and transforming it into energy. A technical roundtable will design the industrial plants that Eni intends to build in Porto Marghera to produce biomethane, bio-oil, and hydrogen from municipal waste and recycling streams.

Opened in May 2014, Eni’s oil refinery in Venice is the first to be converted to a biorefinery (photo courtesy Eni).

Venice, the foremost Italian metropolitan area in recycling, is proving today that it has all the right credentials to be a virtuous example of cooperation for the development of the circular economy: nothing is thrown away and recycling produces wealth. What today is a cost and a problem, tomorrow becomes an advantage, stated Luigi Brugnaro, Mayor of the City and of the Metropolitan City of Venice.

As part of the agreement, a technical roundtable will be established to ascertain how industrial projects could transform municipal waste into energy. Eni intends to build plants in the biorefinery area in Porto Marghera. The working group, composed of qualified technicians, will design the industrial plants to produce biomethane, bio-oil, and hydrogen.

In particular, their work will focus on the design of a treatment plant for end-of-life plastic (ELP) materials, aiming to produce hydrogen, and a treatment plant for organic materials to produce biomethane. Plans to construct plants to supply biomethane to Veritas to fuel the company’s vehicles are also underway.

In the Porto Marghera area, on one hand, we are at the forefront of identifying new technological and industrial actions to transform waste into energy resources, and on the other have confirmed our vocation of actively contributing to environmental sustainability, encouraging the reuse of materials, preventing waste from being dispersed and therefore becoming potentially dangerous to humans, animals and the environment. Thanks to Eni and Veritas for reaching this important agreement, Venice can but support you and side with you said Mayor Brugnaro.

The agreement also foresees that the multi-utility vehicles will soon be powered by Eni Diesel+ fuel, produced at the Eni biorefinery in Venice using an ever-increasing share of used cooking oil (UCO), and tested since April by all the city’s public transport watercraft.

This agreement represents a further important step in our strategy of applying the principles of the circular economy to our business model. The circular economy means less consumption of raw materials, less environmental impact, and more recovery and recycling of waste material. We have the technologies to obtain energy products from urban collection materials, but in order to recover an even larger share of these wasted raw materials, society needs to undergo a cultural evolution commented Giuseppe Ricci, Eni’s Chief Refining & Marketing Officer.

According to Ricci, less than 25 percent of UCO in Italy is collected. Recycling UCO would lead to quadrupling the availability of feedstock for Eni Biorefineries, an increase in the production of biofuels and a significant reduction of the environmental impact that the improper disposal of UCO causes.

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