Allowing for sustainable developmentReading time:
When designing a plant, the concept of sustainable development means that one needs to consider not only its overall cost but also its nature:
- more or less energy-consuming and production of greenhouse gases;
- generating a minimum amount of waste (see costs generated by transport and disposal at a landfill site);
- using a minimum amount of reagents (see contribution, through the production of reagents, to greenhouse gases and permanent waste);
- generating re-usable by-products (sludge for agricultural application, creating new materials from ash, etc.).
All these considerations will not necessarily result in a single optimum system but, in this case, as already stated, overall cost resumes its primordial role.