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OPTICAL AND HEARING
3rd July, 2005
Owning a Volkswagen has always been a wise investment and now, more than ever, it is also environmentally sound. On 20th June, 2005 in Enns near Linz, Austria, Volkswagen laid the foundation stone for the first stage of construction of a large scale end-of-life vehicle recycling plant.
Volkswagen has been pro-active in end-of-life vehicle recycling for almost 15 years, beginning in 1991 with the first activities to dismantle vehicles and then with the development of shredder residue processing at the end of the recycling chain. Environmental Management Systems are in place at all Volkswagen plants and Volkswagen has issued environmental reports every two years since 1995.
This new plant, based on the Volkswagen-SiCon Process, now brings Volkswagen’s commitment to optimising the exploitation of raw material resources from waste in Europe full circle. A smaller plant was also commissioned in Belgium in May 2005.
Jointly developed by Volkswagen and SiCon GmbH since 1999, this is the first industrially viable mechanical process to ensure the maximum level of shredder residue recycling and complies with European legal requirements for end-of-life vehicle recycling. The end-of-life vehicle is handled as raw material, or complex ore, enabling recyclable materials, including other material flows such as electronic waste, to be made available for further use. Under the process, reusable material fractions are produced by multi-stage shredding, sorting and segregation based on such physical criteria as density, shape, magnetic properties, conductivity and optical characteristics.
The process creates secondary raw materials ideally suited to replace primary raw materials and thus protect natural resources. It is a win-win situation for Volkswagen and the environment.
The plant will have the capacity to handle 100,000 tonnes of shredder residue from end-of-life vehicles and other waste, and the project will be implemented by Bernegger, the Austrian company that has played a pioneering role in the field of raw material recycling and environmental protection. The Volkswagen-SiCon process is also adaptable to recycling other end-of-life products such as electrical equipment, and will soon be made available to markets worldwide. Further plants are currently being planned in various European countries.
Information regarding this process and Volkswagen’s commitment to environmental issues and recycling can be found at www.mobilitaet-und-nachhaltigkeit.de and to navigate the site in English, simply click on the Union Jack symbol found under the menu bar on the left hand side.