Health and Environment

Bolzano Waste-to-Energy plant “not a significant source of PCDD/F”

Since 2003, the Bolzano Waste-to-Energy plant monitors closely its emissions of PCCD/F and fine and ultra fine particles. In 2013, a team of researchers studied the data collected and conducted comparative tests in order to assess the relevance of the plant’s emissions in the surrounding environment.


This article presents the case study of a waste incinerator located in a region rich in natural and environmental resources, and close to the city of Bozen, where there are about 100,000 inhabitants. Local authorities paid special attention to the effect of the plant on human health and the surrounding environment. Indeed, among the measures adopted to control the emissions, in 2003 an automatic sampling system was installed specifically to monitor polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxin and polychlorinated dibenzofuran (PCDD/F) emissions during the complete operation time of the plant. The continuous sampling system was coupled directly to aerosol spectrometers for the determination of fine and ultra-fine particles in the emissions of the plant. The measurement results suggest that the waste incineration plant of Bozen is not a significant source of PCDD/F, or fine and ultra-fine particles. Immission measurements from other monitoring systems confirmed these results.

The full study can be found here.

Reference: Marco Ragazzi, Werner Tirler, Giulio Angelucci, Dino Zardi, Elena Cristina Rada. Management of atmospheric pollutants from waste incineration processes: the case of Bozen. Waste Management and Research. Vol 31, Issue 3, 2013.