An integrated approach to planning of recycling activites for the waste from electrical and electronic equipment
2011-02-17T14:52:32Z (GMT) by
This thesis reports on the research undertaken to improve the end-of-life management of Waste from Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) through the generation of bespoke recycling process plans for various electrical and electronic products. The principle objective of this research is to develop an integrated framework to incorporate the related product, process and legislative information during the end-of-life management to promote sustainable practices of processing of such waste. The research contributions are divided into three major parts. The first part reviews the relevant literature in the areas of environmental concerns related to the electrical and electronic recovery sector and end-of-life product recovery decision support tools. The second part investigates the 'Recycling Process Planning' framework which incorporates product evaluation, legislative compliance monitoring, and an ecological and economical assessmentto generate bespoke eco-efficient recycling process plans for recovery and recycling of electrical and electronic equipment The third part includes the design and implementation of a novel computer aided recycling process planner that demonstrates the application of recycling process planning framework and the associated ecological and economical assessment methodology to identify the most appropriate end-of-life options for WEEE. The validity of the research concept has been demonstrated via three case studies. The results from these case studies have highlighted the impact that the proposed recycling process planning framework could have in identifying many improvements which could be made in current recovery and recycling practices through adoption of a systematical approach for generation of recycling process plans based on the most up-to-date information and knowledge on recycling processes. In summary, this research has generated practical and powerful models and tools to improve the environmental and economical performance of WEEE recycling and to provide invaluable support for long term sustainability of the electrical and electronic recovery sector.