Mehta, Rajesh; Golkaram, Milad

There is major push to by the governments and value chain partners move towards circular options for difficult to recycle post-consumer products such as waste mattresses.[1] In the Netherlands alone ~1.6 million mattresses are discarded yearly, of which majority (65%) is incinerated.[2] A sustainable solution to recycle waste mattresses is required to enable the Dutch industry meet the circular economy goals set by the Dutch government.[3] This presentation will share major findings from the screening level life cycle assessment (LCA) of four End of Life (EoL) options for post-consumer mattresses: landfill, incineration with energy recovery, pyrolysis and mechanical recycling using powdering. The LCA was an important work package of a technology development project with the objective to quantify potential sustainability benefits of the pyrolysis of waste mattresses.[4] The emphasis of the pyrolysis process is on product recovery as chemical feedstock. Mass and energy data for the pyrolysis process, foreground dataset, was provided by the consortium partners from actual lab and pilot studies. In addition to the base case, we studied the impact of furnace efficiency, design for recycling, fate of mattress components and the impact of biogenic carbon accounting for latex and ticking. The study showed that pyrolysis is a better option than incineration in terms of GHG and cumulative energy demand (CED) for all the studied cases. Base case analysis showed that pyrolysis of waste mattress can save approximately 526 kg CO2 eq. and approximately 5.1 GJ (24% savings) CED per ton waste mattress compared to incineration. Finally, the study concluded that mechanical recycling can either be better or worse than pyrolysis depending on the processes and quality of recycled material. 1. COM/2020/98 final 2. Op Weg Naar Een Circulaire Matrasketen, 2016 3. A Circular Economy in the Netherlands by 2050 4. PRIMA Project,