Consorzio Conciatori di Ponte a Egola (Ponte a Egola tanners’ consortium) undersigns circular-economy Memorandum of Understanding
14.10.2019 Press release
Today, on 14 October 2019, at the Office of the President of the Regional Council of Tuscany, the Memorandum of Understanding on the circular economy was undersigned by Regione Toscana, Consorzio Conciatori di Ponte a Egola, and Rea Impianti S.r.l.
The President, Enrico Rossi, commenting on the memorandum, stressed the significance of this initiative among others of the Region in favour of circular economy in the tannery district. The President thanked the alderwoman Federica Fratoni for her efforts, as well as the institutions attending, represented by Mayor Simone Giglioli and Deputy Mayor Elisa Montanelli, as well as the alderwoman, Marzia Fattori, of the municipality, Comune di San Miniato, for their presence, attesting to the attention paid by the municipality to the needs of the tannery sector.
The agreement foresees the possibility of private investment, of an estimated value of about 30 million euros, for enhancement of practices of recovery and valorization of waste materials of the tanneries of the Ponte a Egola production area. The plans that the tanners’ consortium, Consorzio Conciatori di Ponte a Egola, undertakes to complete include a cogeneration plant merging with a process of anaerobic co-digestion of purified sludges of certain types of tannery waste: a plan undertaken synergically with currently ongoing enhancement work on the purification plant for Cuoiodepur wastewater, within the ambit of the Accordo di Programma per la tutela delle risorse idriche (programme agreement for protection of water resources).
This intervention is the fruit of an experimental background, and of the expertise acquired and worked on over recent years. It is the result of a desire to attain energy-efficiency for the plant for purification of tannery wastewater while also seeking out new solutions for management of tannery waste and sludge, with a view to energy and material recovery, attained by a more markedly articulated approach to furthering the already virtuous circular-economy developments ongoing for years at Ponte a Egola.
Progress of the project shall be monitored by the Tuscany region’s energy and environment agency, Direzione Ambiente ed Energia della Regione Toscana following the convening of a Tavolo Tecnico (meeting of experts) including the parties to the agreement, each with its own representative.
A further noteworthy aspect of the project is participation − in the platform proposed by the company, Rea Impianti, the Comune di Rosignano Marittimo municipality, the CNR national research body, the Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna educational institution, the Tuscan office of the national association of municipalities (Anci), the Cispel Toscana public services association, and the Chambers of Commerce − to foster applied research regarding corporate needs to innovate, and the supply side of new technologies from research centres of excellence.
The president of the Consorzio Conciatori di Ponte a Egola, Michele Matteoli, noted that the plan as set forth significantly contributes to optimization of recovery of energy and materials integrated on the level of an industrial production area, in full awareness of the fact that environmental quality requires technological advances, which in turn require investment.
Dr Duna Del Seppia, representing REA Impianti, stressed the importance of the memorandum of understanding for development of decidedly significant occasions for teamwork, also within the ambit of R&D projects.
By means of this agreement, the Consorzio Conciatori consortium and the municipal government authority, Amministrazione Comunale di San Miniato, reiterate their unceasing interest in environmental issues, and in issues relating to safeguarding the local ecosystem. Over and above attainment of district EMAS status for the production areas of Ponte a Egola, the status of APEA – Area Produttiva Ecologicamente Attrezzata (ecologically equipped production area) has also been attained. Investments shall stimulate development of technically advanced, leading-edge recovery techniques, in order to increasingly foster sustainability and circularity for the tannery chain, in full awareness of the responsibilities of players in a key industrial sector of international significance.
Source: Consorzio Conciatori – Comune di San Miniato
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