Waste management

What is waste?

By waste we have to intend "any substance or object the owner wants to get rid of or has the intention or obligation to get rid of". Accordingly, the identification criterion of waste is double.

How is waste classified?

Waste is classified according to the origin, distinguishing between municipal waste and special waste and according to characteristics of dangerousness, i.e. dangerous and non-dangerous.


  • household waste, even bulky, coming from private homes areas;
  • non-dangerous waste coming from areas the use of which is different from those indicated in letter a), assimilated to municipal waste as regards quality and quantity;
  • waste collected when sweeping roads;
  • waste of whatever nature or origin, laying on roads and public areas or on roads and private areas subject to public use anyhow, or on sea and lake beaches and river banks;
  • vegetal waste coming from green areas, such as gardens, parks and cemeteries;
  • waste coming from exhumations, as well as other waste coming from cemeteries activities.


  • waste deriving from agricultural and agro-industrial activities;
  • waste due to activities of demolition and building works, as well as waste deriving from excavation works;
  • waste deriving from industrial processes;
  • waste deriving from handicraft activities;
  • waste due to commercial activities;
  • waste deriving from service activities;
  • waste deriving from waste recovery and disposal activities, sludge produced during potabilization activities and other waters treatments, wastewaters purification and smokes abatement;
  • waste deriving from sanitary activities.

European objectives regarding waste management

Considering the philosophy establishing a hierarchy in waste treatments, the European Committee determined that a proper management of waste has to follow a precise order, depending on levels priority and environmental sustainability:

  • prevention;
  • preparation in view of recovery / re-use;
  • recycling;
  • other types of recovery, e.g. energy recovery;
  • disposal.

As of these principles, prevention has to encourage reducing waste production and containing waste dangerousness, while facilitating its re-use, recycling and other types of recovery.

Disposal in landfills is at the bottom of this hierarchy, as it is considered as a residual option to be cancelled completely as time goes by.

Waste treatment plants

Managing waste in a rational way is extremely important, as they might become a resource not to be underestimated, in terms of energetic requirements and eco-sustainability.

All the waste produced, both as municipal waste and industrial waste, is subject to a fundamental collection phase, in order to go to various treatment plants according to different typologies.

Waste treatment plants are essential to ensure environmental protection and avoid dispersions of elements and materials that might cause natural matrixes pollution. It is possible to avoid such problems by ensuring a proper management.

  • Composting-Biostabilization
    These are plants that treat the so-called municipal solid waste wet fraction. Composting plants transform the organic fraction into compost, to be used as fertilizer in agriculture. Biostabilization equipment allows treating organic waste in order to use it in various fields of activities, including agriculture.
  • Industrial waste treatment, recovery and selection plants
    There are various types of equipment used to treat dangerous special waste and non-dangerous waste based on processes, such as chemical-physical and biological treatments, having as a purpose recovery and disposal.
    Recovery and selection plants are those dealing with the separation of various types of waste and may be based on mechanical biological sorting or dry fractions recovery. In the first case, the plant receives mostly waste deriving from municipal unsorted waste collection, containing organic fractions that are sent to an incinerator or bio-stabilizator after a treatment meant to recover some materials.
    The second ones, i.e. equipment recovering dry fractions, receive dry waste coming from sorted waste collection (i.e. paper, glass, plastics and metals), while the organic fraction coming from kitchens or cafeterias is sent to anaerobic biodigestion plants or composting plants.
    Finally, in the case of waste with an organic or inorganic matrix containing high quantities of heavy metals, the treatment takes place in inertization plants. Waste resulting from selection and separation processes, which it is not possible to recover, will be sent to a waste-to-energy plant or a landfill to be eliminated definitely.
  • Purification plants
    Purification plants are complex systems designed to treat wastewaters.
    Wastewaters are waters the quality of which has been affected by human activities in cities, or in agricultural and industrial environments. These waters may no longer be used directly, as they are contaminated by various types of organic and inorganic substances that constitute a hazard for public health and for natural environments.
    This is why they cannot be directly re-introduced in the environment, as the final destination (soil, sea, rivers and lakes) would not be in a condition to receive a quantity of polluting substances excessive for an automatic natural cleaning process to take place, without jeopardizing the normal ecosystem balance.
  • Waste-to-energy plants
    These are plants used to incinerate undiversified waste, in order to produce energy yielding electric power, as their mechanisms allow for the valorization of heat generated by the combustion process meant to produce energy.
    These plants reach high temperatures, over 850°C, in order to avoid producing dioxins. In spite of this, they are not a 100% green solution, as waste combustion produces smokes and ashes containing heavy metals and contributing to the emission of greenhouse gases.
  • Landfills
    A controlled landfill is a place where final waste storage takes place, using soil. Therefore, landfills are a solution for a final disposal of waste that cannot be recovered in any other way.
    According to the type of waste, landfills are classified in three categories:
    • Landfills for inactive waste - aggregates
    • Landfills for non-dangerous waste
    • Landfills for dangerous waste

Biogas equipment set up in landfills may constitute a good solution to produce clean energy, as they also help reducing the emissions of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

What can Labiotest do?

Waste management processes including

  • collection
  • transport
  • recycling or disposal treatment
  • recovery or re-use of useful materials
  • waste storage and final disposal

may be at the origin of malodorous odors emissions generating from specific or diffused sources that, in most cases, may potentially cause a nuisance to residents or other production activities present.

Labiotest is in a position to analyze the emission problem and propose a good applicable solution, thanks to the use of technologies and equipment for the abatement and containment of malodorous odors, guaranteeing high efficiency rates in all applications.

Every emission has its characteristics and its most proper solution for treatment. This is what Labiotest has been able to offer for more than 30 years.

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