In chemical processing, solvents are used for a number of purposes, including extracting and dissolving. In some cases, large volumes of solvents must be used in the processing of chemicals, and this can lead to a lot of waste since solvents are generally left over after processes are complete. Spent solvents must then be disposed of in a safe manner and new solvents must be procured, but this leads to additional expenses for processors along with added liability.
Solvent recovery is a solution for capturing viable solvent materials that can either be processed for reuse or that can be repurposed for other uses. Companies like NexGen Enviro specialize in industrial solvent recycling systems, and processing facilities can often benefit from the use of solvent distillation systems.
Below are a few key benefits of utilizing solvent recovery processes:
1. Saves Money
One of the biggest benefits of recovering solvents in chemical processing is that doing so saves money. The very nature of recovering chemicals means lower costs in terms of new procurement expenses, and when solvents are recovered and repurposed, this can extend savings even further.
Savings may also be experienced along supply chains in procurement. Less solvent being ordered means fewer packing and shipping costs, and processing equipment may also experience an extended life. Because recovered solvents are clean and function practically like virgin solvents, the use of recovered materials means fewer chances for equipment to need maintenance. This further reduces operating expenses.
2. Better For The Environment
The environmental impact of solvent disposal can be fairly large. It’s believed that by introducing a solvent recovery system, processors can potentially reduce greenhouse gas emissions due to fewer resources being used to obtain new raw materials, and there’s also a lower chance for hazardous waste to enter soil and groundwater through landfills and other disposal sites.
Another component in this is the impact solvent recovery can have on environmental regulation compliance. Some governments have regulations in place that require adherence to environmental guidelines. Recovering solvents can assist processors in staying within compliance guidelines, and this is an added environmental benefit as it also helps processors to do their part in limiting climate exposure to hazardous waste.
3. On-Site Recovery Systems Are Convenient
Convenience is another benefit of using recovery systems for solvents. When working with hazardous materials on an industrial scale, the need to capture, package and transport waste for disposal requires personnel and time. When you utilize on-site industrial solvent recovery systems, the time required to handle waste can be cut dramatically, freeing up teams to handle other important tasks.
On-site systems can also automate recovery processes. Many are designed to be used by simply introducing spent solvents into an intake where the equipment handles the rest of the task. This further frees up time for workers to engage in other tasks without the need for constant monitoring.
4. Liability Reduction
Whenever you work with solvents, the potential exists for liability exposure. This is especially true when it comes to transport and disposal as your company is responsible for ensuring that hazardous materials are handled in accordance with laws and regulations. The recovery process using sophisticated solvent distillation systems can reduce liability by reducing the need to transport and dispose of spent solvents. Instead, these materials can be revitalized for reuse, limiting liability exposure.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) takes these matters very seriously, and laws like the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act govern liability for chemical processors. Failure to comply with EPA regulations can result in fines and fees, and processors that have been found in violation risk the reputations of their companies and services.