Recycling benefits the climate by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and it conserves natural resources such as timber, water and minerals. Yet in 2014, only 44.9% of household waste was recycled, and fell to 44.3% in 2015. Traditional waste handling systems are inefficient, relying on households to sort waste into different bins that are transported to separate locations. The waste cannot be completely separated either.
For instance, paper containers are typically made of a paper exterior, a foil interior, a plastic screw cap, and remnants of whatever substance was inside the containers. At best, households can screw off the plastic cap for recycling and empty the container as much as possible. They cannot separate the paper from the foil.
But with DONG Energy's REnescience technology, enzymes separate waste so that the materials can be recycled. Leftovers and paper are turn into biogas, plastic is re-purposed for new plastic goods, and foil is burned in a waste incinerator to generate energy.