The earthresQue centre will tackle a major societal problem: landfilling of excess earth materials and waste that should rather be handled in a system where we recycle contaminated soil and surplus masses, and find good solutions for future landfills.
"We will develop technologies and systems for sustainable handling and treatment of waste and surplus masses," says project manager and NMBU professor Helen French.
Objective: circular waste sector
The centre will improve and develop new methods for recycling, reuse and treatment processes for contaminated soil, surplus masses and waste.
"The goal is to make a higher proportion of surplus masses and waste suitable as raw materials in new products."
The researchers and user partners will also improve the management of old landfills, and find sustainable solutions for future landfills.
"Efforts will be made to control and purify leachate from the landfills, and develop new monitoring methods for gas leaks," says French.
New economic criteria that ensure sustainable business models will be developed, with proposals for better regulations and tax systems that ensure a circular waste sector and mass management.
A Norwegian Centre for Research-based Innovation (CRI)
EarthresQue is a Centre for Research-based Innovation (SFI), whose overall scheme is to enhance the ability of the business sector to innovate and create value through a greater focus on long-term research.
The centre is hosted by the Faculty of Environmental Sciences and Natural Resource Management at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences. CRI status was awarded by the Research Council of Norway in June, 2020. The earthresQue officially opened on 1 November, 2020, and will rund for a period of 5+3 years after a mid-term evaluation. The centre is funded primarily by the Research Council of Norway and through contributions from a number of its industry partners.
Organization and partners
The earthresQue centre is a cross-disciplinary research centre involving graduate students, PhD students and research scientists. The centre has an extensive network of partners from industry, research institutes and the public sector.
The centre is led by professor Helen French. The centre’s administration is located at the Faculty of Environmental Sciences and Natural Resource Management, Norwegian University of Life Sciences.