What waste does the plant process?

From the very beginning of its operation ITPOK is used to process mixed municipal waste (code 20 03 01). This waste comes from Region II described in the Waste Management Plan for the Wielkopolskie Voivodeship, for which ITPOK acts as the Regional Municipal Waste Treatment Plant. Therefore ITPOK receives waste from Poznań and surrounding communes.

Based on the permits issued and technical capacities, ITPOK can also receive:

  • Bulk waste (code 20 03 07), including primarily worn or damaged furniture
  • Waste which, after passing through a sorting plant, has not been classified as a secondary raw material, so-called other wastes (including mixed substances and articles) from mechanical treatment of waste other than those mentioned in 19 12 11 (code 19 12 12)
  • Refused derived fuel (code 19 12 10)


Why does municipal waste land up in the plant?  Is there any other method of managing this type of waste?

The method of municipal waste thermal treatment is consistent with the waste management hierarchy indicated in the most important EU legal act – Directive 2008/98/EC on waste, as well as with the Polish legislation – the Waste Act of 14 December 2012. According to this hierarchy, the thermal treatment of waste is classified as a “recovery method”, as the thermal treatment process involves energy recovery. Recovery methods should be applied after such waste management practices as prevention, reuse, recycling and before other practices that aim at the disposal of the waste (e.g. before landfilling).  According to the hierarchy, thermal processing should be used for waste which is not suitable for recycling, because it has lost its utility values, but due to energetic values it should be subject to energy recovery.

Waste incineration is not intended to replace recycling, but to complement it according to the waste handling hierarchy.


How is waste managed in the plant?

The waste brought to the plant is mixed in order to homogenize the composition and thus the calorific value, and then fed to the grate (furnace) where it is incinerated. More information can be found HERE


Does the plant emit any odour? Is there an issue of smell inconvenience?

Odour inconvenience is reduced to minimum by using partial pressure in the unloading hall and the waste storage facility (bunker). Air from these spaces is sucked to the system and used in the incineration process, therefore it does not spread outside the plant. Additionally, ITPOK has been equipped with an air deodorising system which is used during the plant outage.


What happens to the incineration residues – slag and dust?

By-products of the waste incineration process are process residues which are properly managed and subject to recovery processes. It is slag produced in the process of incineration and dust from exhaust gas treatment.

In the plant slag is used to recover ferrous and nonferrous metals, and the remaining fraction may be successfully applied as an additive to construction aggregate which constitutes a constituent of road base course. Whereas the dust (after proper treatment) can be used to fill empty headings in salt mines, which eliminates results of mining damage.


Is the plant safe for the environment and people?

Yes, the Municipal Waste Thermal Treatment Plant in Poznań is safe for the environment.

ITPOK has been designed and constructed according to BATs – Best Available Techniques. This means that it has been equipped with the state-of-the-art technical and technological solutions enabling it to meet the stringent environmental standards of Polish and EU law. It makes the plant fulfill all the requirements of the Integrated Permit issued for the project.


Is it possible to check if the plant does not exceed the permissible emissions standards?

The operation of the system is constantly monitored and controlled both by the team of specialists servicing the plant, as well as by authorized external institutions. Residents and local government bodies are informed about the emission levels on an ongoing basis. The publication of the measurement results is displayed on an on-going basis on an emission table placed in front of the entrance to the plant premises and in the form of daily reports on the website, under the tab Reports from the Plant operation.


What happens to waste in case of the plant failure and when it is impossible to thermally process the waste?

In the event of a failure and during scheduled technical outages of the plant, the waste is stored in

a bunker, the capacity and design of which allow it to be stored for about a week. If the outage is longer, the waste can be compressed, baled and stored at a dedicated location on the plant premises. After the plant resumes operation, all the waste is subject to thermal processing.


What happens with the energy recovered in thermal processing of waste?

Thanks to the method of waste thermal processing, the waste brought to the plant is transformed to a resource which is used to produce thermal and electric energy.

The generated electrical energy is transferred to the power grid. Whereas thermal energy, in the form of heating water, is supplied to VEOLIA Energia Poznań, from where it is transferred to Poznań residents as heat.


Will the plant be operated continuously all year round?

ITPOK is a continuous operation plant and is operated 365 days a year. Necessary technical inspections shall be carried out during the operation of the plant, but not more than 720 hours per year and shall not result in suspension of collection of waste delivered daily to the plant.