Green light for sludge drying unit

Greek construction giant Aktor has won the 25-million-euro contract to build a drying unit on the islet of Psyttaleia, which could help solve Attica’s mounting sewage problem, the Public Works Ministry said yesterday. Some 150,000 tons of waste have piled up on Psyttaleia, where all of Attica’s sewage is treated. The unit will dry up to 800 tons of sewage a day – more than is stored daily on the islet – using four revolving drums operating at temperatures reaching 500 degrees Celsius. The dried waste may then be used as fuel or compost, the ministry said. If no appeals are lodged against the awarding of the contract, work on the unit will start in March and is due to be finished within 14 months. The storage and treatment of waste has proved a major headache for the government, which only last week ruled out the possibility, mooted earlier, of transferring excess sewage to the African state of Sudan. Aktor beat off two other bidders to win the contract for the unit. Three-quarters of the funds for the project will be provided by the European Union.

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