Free Waste Audit
Client

Benedict's Recycling

Application

Construction & Demolition Waste

Equipment

M&K Bespoke C&D Recovery Plant

Location

New South Wales

Introducing

At the end of 2016, the NSW EPA said construction and demolition recycling rates across the state had, for the first time, gone backwards. One company however, is increasing its tonnages and with its eye fixed firmly on the future, it has embarked on a million-dollar project to upgrade its crushing plant in Belrose.

Benedict Industries, which processes C&D waste, celebrated its 50th anniversary last year and five decades on, the company is going from strength to strength.  In NSW, the company has a hub facility in Chipping Norton where its invested “tens of millions of dollars” in equipment to improve processing, a facility in Newcastle that opened about a year ago, a plant in Belrose, and a transfer station in Unanderra in Wollongong.

Benedict has also lodged two development applications with the Department of Planning for transfer stations in Smeaton Range near Camden and Penrith.

Across its sites, Benedict process 700,000 tonnes of C&D waste and its attitude is this – the company does not own landfills but makes its money recycling as much waste as it possibly can, focusing on how to do that better and smarter in order to achieve as high a recovery rate as possible.

Project Highlights

Key outcomes and benefits of the project

Benedict Recycling upgrade Construction and Demolition recovery plant with new M&K turnkey static plant

Screening solution needed to handle sticky and wet construction and demolition waste materials

Efficient Fines removal solution required to prevent bottlenecks ensuring improved C&D recovery targets and cost savings

60% more fines recovered with the utilisation of the M&K SW276 Flip Flow screen over conventional dry screen

All year round running despite weather conditions with the incorporation of a new M&K Flip Flow

Future proof treatment plant with increase processing and specification capacity above current processing and legislative demands

THE BELROSE CHALLENGE

Over in Belrose, 19km north east of Sydney, Benedict operates two processing plants, one that sorts mixed waste, and the other that crushes and screens brick and concrete that come out of the sorting plant. The recycled materials are then used to make aggregate and bedding sand. Some six to nine months ago, Benedict upgraded its sorting plant capacity due to increasing demand, which meant more concrete and brick were being produced.

“We’ve increased the processing capability of our sorting plant by well over 100%, which means for the proportion of concrete and brick, we’ve probably got 100% more than what we did prior to the upgrade,” Benedict Industries general manager recycling Ian Collier told Inside Waste. “It became apparent that our crushing plant, which was very old, was the bottleneck and we had to upgrade our crushing plant in order to keep up with the other plant and what it was producing. Because if you fail to do that, what you end up with is stockpiles of waste, which no one wants or likes.”

When it comes to C&D recycling, these bottlenecks are caused by fines and their removal is key to improving C&D recovery targets as well as cost savings.  And the Belrose site had an added disadvantage in that the region gets an inordinate amount of rainfall which causes the material to become sticky and gluey, further hindering the screening process. FOCUS enviro is the Australian distributor of M&K materials handling equipment and it worked with Benedict on an appropriate solution.  The company’s director, Robbie McKernan, explained the importance of efficiently screening fines from C&D waste.

“Today’s aftermarkets for fines to be extracted from C&D material have become extremely high in standard and there are demands for a very specific and small fraction size. This fraction size is very difficult and inefficient to achieve with conventional screening methods particularly when the material is wet or from a high clay-based source,” McKernan said. Fines and capacity aside, Benedict also wanted to future-proof its Belrose operations, anticipating future expansion that may indirectly come out of the EPA’s proposed C&D legislation (see Related Articles).

“What the upgrade is all about is enabling us to deal with our current waste volumes. But in the future, this could be related to the upcoming EPA legislation where the regulator is looking to set minimum resource recovery thresholds to stop token recycling. This is where someone picks the easy, low hanging fruit from a pile of mixed waste and they might pick large pieces of concrete and brick and steel and then the rest gets rammed into a truck and goes away for disposal or heads north,” Collier said.

“We don’t support that and it’s not legitimate recycling. If the EPA brings in this legislation with minimum resource recovery targets, I think the likes of Benedict and others that have invested lots of money in processing equipment will see a lot more waste coming our way. Unless we’ve geared our processing capability for some future expansion, we won’t be able to cope with that.”

THE NEW PLANT

Benedict turned to FOCUS enviro for a holistic, turnkey solution and settled on a screen with a flip-flow deck, amongst other things.

“This is a screen that has a series of segmented mats and they’re like a series of mini trampolines. Each segment expands and contracts and the screens never block as opposed to more traditional screens that might have a woven wire mesh and the whole deck shakes and it doesn’t have this trampoline effect where it unblocks itself all the time. That formed the basis for the type of screen,” Collier said.

“We went for a large twin deck but the bottom deck comprises this flip-flow screen and that’s the one that screens the fines component out of the crushed material.” After Benedict determined the capacity and capability it needed for fines screening and deciding on flip-flow screens, it then worked backwards to complete the upgrade.

“All the plant’s conveyors are sized at 1200mm, which is quite large and we kept our two crushers – one’s a jaw crusher and one’s an impactor. They weren’t going to be under capacity so really, it was all about what fines screening output we needed and everything worked backwards from there,” Collier said.

FOCUS enviro worked with us to look at our two crushers in-situ because they’re primarily fixed and how they could build the rest of the plant for us. With the other suppliers, that’s not a space they’re particularly keen to play in. Focus Enviro did an extensive amount of work keeping what we wanted to keep from our old plant with what we needed in the new plant and making it all mesh together.

Why Flip-Flow?

McKernan noted that the demand for flexible screening systems and solutions, just like the one Benedict picked, has had a “meteoritic increase” and M&K Group are pioneers in this space.

“M&K has been a plant builder from the 1970s and it manufactures the SW276 Waste Screen which is on Benedict’s plant and the heart of the process. The SW276 Waste Screen is one of the largest screens of this type available and enables maximum recovery of C&D fines in all weather conditions due the flexible bottom flip-flow deck that maintains optimum performance,” he said. “A less than 5mm product can be produced without blinding of the screen media, ensuring quality and quantity of the fines. An average of 60% more fines are recovered from the M&K SW276 in comparison to the identical size/dimensions of a conventional dry screen.”

For operators and recyclers that are considering upgrading their C&D plants, McKernan noted that there is no one-size-fits-all solution. “For this reason, FOCUS enviro provides waste and site surveys free of charge to fully understand the expectations of each client and provide the best fit solution/technology to meet legislation, targets, and within budget,” he said.

“In our opinion, C&D processors should look to technology that does not just meet this year’s legislation but future-proofs against increasing legislation and higher standards/specifications of fines and C&D Waste recovery to come. This should be combined with more simple and automated processes that are designed with their waste stream, volume and markets in mind.”

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