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REMONDIS Integrated and Managed Services // 4 October 2021
Hydrocarbons can be toxic to marine and terrestrial environments
Some are potentially combustible and flammable and present a significant fire risk
Hydrocarbons can be carcinogenic, increasing risk of illness with long-term exposure
Hydrocarbons are a group of organic compounds, predominantly derived from petroleum, coal and natural gas products. More generally this encompasses all types of oils, greases and fuels as well as other less common materials such as solvents.
Hydrocarbon waste may include liquids, absorbent materials, rags, soils and sludges contaminated by hydrocarbon contaminants.
Waste oils commonly come from industrial and domestic vehicle engines, gearboxes and machinery where they are used as lubricants and can be refined back into new lubricating oils or alternative fuels. aste oils may also originate from transformers where they are used as an insulator or cooling agent.
Waste solvents may be generated by parts washers or industrial cleaning or coating processes, or through the use of waste inks or solvent-based paints.
All hydrocarbon contaminated waste should be appropriately stored – in special bins, tanks, containers or stillages – to avoid the release of hydrocarbons into the environment.
It’s also important to consider secondary containments such as bunding (retaining wall around storage) or spill trays, that act as a fail-safe if a primary container leaks.
Hydrocarbon waste management is a specialised field, governed by regulation and managed by licensed experts.
Various disposal methods can be used to dispose of or recycle hydrocarbons or hydrocarbon contaminated waste. The selected methods must consider:
For solid hydrocarbon wastes, disposal and recycling options may include:
For liquid hydrocarbon wastes this may include:
In some instances, sites can be paid for waste oil. However, the waste oil must meet certain parameters, including:
The value of oil in international markets must also be high enough to warrant a return value.
When disposing of empty containers such as drums or pails that have contained hydrocarbons, you should:
In some circumstances, it may also be possible to triple rinse the containers and recycle them as uncontaminated to reduce costs and improve recyclability.
IN BRIEF / Hydrocarbon management
A quick introduction to hydrocarbon waste management, from the REMONDIS IMS team
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REMONDIS Australia is part of the REMONDIS Group and is one of the world’s largest recycling, services and water companies. remondis.com
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REMONDIS Australia Pty Ltd Head Office Level 4, 163 O’Riordan Street Mascot NSW 2020 Australia T +61 2 9032 7100
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