Eni staff in Porto Marghera collects UCO for biofuel conversion

By Eni S.p.A. | June 04, 2018

Eni is the first company in the world to have taken a traditional refinery and transformed it into a biorefinery using proprietary technology. As of June 4, Eni will begin collecting used cooking oils from the homes of its employees, which will then be converted into high-quality biofuels. This pioneering initiative is part of Eni’s commitment to adopt a circular economy program across all of its business areas, with the aim of maximizing efficiency and the sustainable use of energy. The project is being launched in the Eni biorefinery in Venice following an agreement between Eni and Veritas, the multi-utility company responsible for the collection and treatment of waste in the Venice area. Over the course of the next few weeks, the project will be extended to the Porto Marghera petrochemical plant where Eni’s subsidiaries Versalis and Syndial also operate.

A container made specifically for the collection of used cooking oils has already been installed inside the biorefinery and employees have been given a special jerry can to facilitate the disposal of their used oils. 

Veritas will be in charge of emptying the container. The city of Venice, Veritas, AVM/ACTV and Eni signed an agreement March 9 to deliver the purified oil to the Venice biorefinery, which will then convert the oil into the high-quality biofuel Enidiesel+, a 15 percent renewable product, which will be used by the vaporetti in the lagoon.

Eni plans to progressively extend the project of collecting used cooking oils to other company sites in Italy.

The primary objective, in addition to kick-starting a true circular economy, is to convert waste that would otherwise be potentially detrimental to the environment into a new energy resource. Estimates show that every Italian family produces about 3 liters of used cooking, frying and food oils every year. Disposing of this oil as domestic waste causes several problems. It pollutes surface waters, making large quantities of water unfit for drinking, and harms the flora and fauna of rivers, lakes and seas. Dwellings are also affected negatively because sewers and collecting systems become blocked, which increases the cost of maintenance. Finally, it causes the performance of purification plants to fall since every single liter of oil treated in waste water produces up to 4 kilograms of sludge.

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