Paving the road for automated waste collection in France, celebrating over a decade of progress

October 11 – Envac France has been responsible for installing pneumatic waste collection systems in the municipalities of Issy-le-Moulineaux and Romainville, as well as in the Batignolles district of Paris. This advanced technology significantly reduces the number of conventional waste truck collection routes, resulting in an 80% reduction in NO2 and CO2 emissions.

Automated waste collection is a sustainable and efficient waste management system that eliminates heavy goods vehicles from city streets. It uses an underground vacuum network to transport household and recyclable waste to a central collection point. France has been using this system since the 2010s, and it is currently deployed in the city of Paris and several municipalities on its periphery.

At the beginning of the second decade of this century, Envac partnered with suppliers in sustainable urban development and took charge of installing pneumatic waste collection systems in the municipalities of Issy le Moulineaux (which currently has two facilities in operation) and Romainville, as well as in the Parisian district of Batignolles.

Moreover, two operational facilities in the hospitals of Montpellier and Strasbourg have a combined capacity of over 1,500 beds. In total, the urban facilities in the Paris Belt cover the automated waste collection service of 11,000 households, which means that more than 36,000 inhabitants benefit from an innovative waste management service that, in addition to being convenient, contributes to improving the environment in cities.

Automated waste technology is estimated to reduce the number of kilometres travelled by conventional garbage trucks on urban roads by up to 90%. This reduction leads to a decrease of up to 80% in NO2 and CO2 emissions associated with the consumption of fossil fuels used by heavy traffic. Recent developments in the system have enabled the integration of data-driven machine learning elements into the control modules. This allows for real-time analysis of users’ deposit patterns and habits in the system, resulting in further improvements in energy efficiency.

This system brings the waste collection process closer, in terms of convenience and performance, to other urban infrastructures such as water, energy, sewage or gas supply networks. Instead of a fleet of trucks emtpying waste bins on the streets, users dispose of their waste bags at special drop-off units installed on the street or inside the buildings at any time of the day or night.

Periodically, the bags are vacuumed and transported through a subway network of pipes to a central collection point, where they are compacted in a container. The air used to transport the waste is treated in a filter room that purifies it before it is sent outside.

“Automated waste collection technology has been crucial in creating sustainable and healthy spaces. French municipalities have been at the forefront of adopting this technology, setting an example for other cities that aspire to implement more sustainable and efficient waste management models.” Carlos Bernad, President of EMEA at Envac Group.

Originally published in France by Sophie Candau


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