In July, 2018, INSEE Ecocycle successfully treated more than 45 tons of hazardous waste – PCB contaminated oil with Co-processing in cement kilns technology. This is an important activity within the project “PCB Management in Vietnam” approved by Vietnam Environment Administration (VEA) in order to destroy PCB thoroughly and safely under the Stockholm Convention in Vietnam.
PCB stands for Polychlorinated Biphenyls, one of the 22 POPs in the Stockholm Convention that will be forbidden by 2020 and safely disposed in 2028 in Vietnam.
PCB has been honored in the past as an ideal additive for insulators in electrical equipment such as transformers, capacitors, until it is discovered to be the cause of many environmental disasters in Japan, USA… The hazardous level of some PCB is just less than the most hazardous type of dioxins. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified PCBs into Group 2A, a group of hazardous chemicals that are capable of causing cancer.

The project “PCB Management in Vietnam” is part of the implementation of the Stockholm Convention in Vietnam by the Government of Viet Nam and the World Bank, using funding from the Global Environment Facility (GEF). The project helps to build Vietnam’s national capacity to manage PCBs and safely store large amounts of PCBs in the demonstration provinces for future disposal.

Co-processing in cement kiln technology provides a high temperature environment of up to 2,000°C and long residence time, allowing for the complete removal of complex hydrocarbon compounds and not generating secondary waste and are also equipped with The emission monitoring system operates continuously during co-processing. Many developed countries in the world have successfully processed PCBs using this technology, such as Norway and Sweden since the 1980s. INSEE Ecocycle also has experience in successfully processing PCBs in Sri Lanka.

Transporting PCB contaminated oil at INSEE Ecocycle’s Hon Chong plant in Kien Giang

PCB contamincated oil is stored at the hazardous waste of Hon Chong plant, Kien Giang of INSEE Ecocycle

The PCB is pumped from the drum through a 16 m3 tank
The process of collection and treatment is strictly carried out in accordance with the law and international standards. All steps are researched, evaluated, prepared, and planned carefully, ensuring safety for the environment as well as the people directly implement the work. Gas emission will be controlled by the Central Control Room with an continuous emission monitoring system that records actual emissions of VOC, NH3, O2, HCl, CO, NO, NO2, SO2, H2O.
This process will be monitored by an independent monitoring unit – the Institute of Natural Resources and the Environment. The destruction process will be witnessed by the following individuals and organizations: Sai Gon Water Supply Company, Department of Natural Resources and Environment.
With this project, INSEE Ecocycle desire to contribute to environmental protection by thorough and safe treatment of one of the most hazardous wastes defined by the Government of Vietnam and the world. We want to make a positive difference to the environment, improve quality of life and conserve the natural resources for future generations.
Media Information about this project:
In 2012, INSEE Ecocycle Vietnam is licensed by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to treat PCBs with co-processing technology in cement kiln and is the only unit in Vietnam to be licensed for processing this waste. INSEE Ecocycle has proven its ability to handle PCBs thoroughly, fully complies with environmental and safety regulations on gas emissions (National Technical Regulation on Hazardous Waste Co-processing in Cement kiln QCVN 41: 2011 / BTNMT) and related international standards.
In 2014, INSEE Ecocycle Vietnam- the leader in waste treatment industry completed the collection of 7 tons of PCB-contaminated oil of Cuu Long Investment Joint Stock Company at Cai Lan port, Quang Ninh. The collection took place under the supervision of many authorities, representatives of Cuu Long company and news agencies. INSEE Ecocycle strictly adheres to the national environmental law and and applies many professional management systems to ensure that waste management practices are safe for human and the environment, such as: ISO 9001 & 14001, SEDEX, OHSAS 18000 …


According to the Department of Waste Management and Environment Promotion, there are about 1153 polluted spots caused by pesticides containing POP. Among these are various types of toxic pesticide which are difficult to be destroyed. Lacking knowledge, local people stored pesticides in storages that did not meet the safety standards. From time to time, pesticides have started to absorb into storage floors and follow underground water leading to serious pollution in the community.

In view of this severe issue, the Ministry of National Resources and Environment along with the United Nation Development Program launched a bid seeking a contractor responsible for treating the most contaminated areas of Nghe An and Ha Tinh provinces. It was an international bid with participants from 14 different local as well as international firms.

On 30/11/2015, INSEE Ecocycle Vietnam processed 870,963 tons of pesticide-contaminated soil stock in 02 provinces Nghe An and Ha Tinh. This is a part of the “Building Capacity to Eliminate Chemical Plant Protection; POP stockpiles in Vietnam” was what the Project Management Board POP-Pesticide (Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment) and Chapter The UN Development in Vietnam deployed and controlled.

Pesticide contaminated soil in 02 provinces Nghe An and Ha Tinh in 2015

870,963 tons of pesticide-contaminated soils in the districts of Vuc Rong, Thach Luu, Hon Tro, Chien Thang, Tan Phu, and Nghia Dan were collected and transported by INSEE Ecocycle to its plant in Hon Chong, Kien Giang province to co-process in cement kiln. Experts from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and UNDP supervised the process.

Co-processing in cement kiln technology has been accredited as a safety and environmental friendly waste management solution thanks to its advantages: Extremely high temperature – up to 2,000°C, oxygen excess and long residence time destroy completely waste materials; no-residue after the process means no environmental risks compare with incinerator or landfill; high alkaline environment will absorb acid gases generated from the process, according to which, the effects on the environment from the acid gas will be eliminated; emission control system 24/24 in every INSEE Ecocycle plants ensures emission safety.

INSEE Ecocycle Vietnam package, collect and treat 870,963 tons of pesticide contaminated soil

Throughout the process, relevant safety indicators have been strictly monitored and reported. INSEE Ecocycle particularly invited Pacific Environment – an Australian independent third party of environmental impact assessment to measure emissions in the process. The results showed that the treatment did not affect the emission. In fact, all emission indexes were much lower than the limit required, particularly, the concentration of HCl, CO, SO2, and NO were under the requirement limit, slightly dust emission comparing with the limits.

This project against pesticide residue contributes to the goal of “solving all areas of serious environmental pollution and particularly in 2025,” the government of Vietnam. The first ones to experience the difference are the people living in the contaminated area.


What is HCFCs?

HCFC (hydrochlorofluorocarbon) is a chlorine-based refrigerant that cause ozone depletion – the shield protects the earth against harmful UV rays from the sun.

HCFC, commonly called  R-22 in Vietnam, was used in many older air conditioners.
The treatment of HCFCs reduces the leading cause of ozone depletion, which plays a key role in restoring the ozone layer – the Earth’s shield.

The collection and treatment of HCFCs is part of a project to build a green hospital sponsored by the Mitsubishi Corporation under the framework of cooperation between the two Governments of Vietnam and Japan. It is expected that by 2030, Vietnam will handle 97.5% of the ozone depleted emissions in air conditioners and old refrigerators.
Under the supervision and support of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the Green Development Center and Japanese experts, more than 123 kg of HCFCs are put into cement kilns at temperature of above 2,000°C, long burning time, and a closed feeding system for complete destruction. INSEE Ecocycle Vietnam is proud to be the pioneer in processing HCFCs by Co-processing technology.
This HCFC is taken from the air-conditioners of the two hospitals of  Viet Duc Friendship Hospital and the People’s Hospital 115, under the project “Building the green hospitals through the improvement of effective & environmentally friendly energy use in Vietnam” under the cooperation between the Government of Vietnam and Japan.
Nearly 20 prestigious press agencies across the country simultaneously reported on the event, such as:

Vietnam Television (VTV): 20161121184350916.htm
Business Integration Magazine:
Ministry of Industry and Trade News:
Process of HCFC treatment in INSEE Ecocycle Vietnam

Process of HCFC treatment in INSEE Ecocycle Vietnam

NSEE Ecocycle Vietnam has detailed plans for all steps from analysis, testing and transportation to co-processing in cement kiln. Experts handling waste are trained and equipped with the necessary protection to ensure that all operations with waste are safe. Risk assessments are communicated to workers and staff in a clear and timely manner. Prevention and controlling measures of fire, explosion and explosion are always available.

Collection and transportation

The HCFC tanks were visually risk-assessed, wrapped around by foam to avoid collisions and contained in secondary containers which were also fixed by the straps. In addition, the GPS system keeps track of it from pick-up to transportation stage to the factory.

Treating HCFC thoroughly & safely by Co-processing in cement kiln system

Cement kiln with high thermal capacity up to 2.000*C, long residence time, high oxidation environment together with closed feeding system, are monitored continuously for complete destruction of HCFC compounds. Co-processing is recognized as a feasible, efficient and environmentally friendly solution for the general disposal of waste in the world and is supported by international organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO), the Business Council The World of Sustainable Development, Basel Convention, European Cement Association.
The exhausted gas is controlled by a 24/7 continuous emission control system to ensure overall waste disposal, specially HCFC, does not cause any environmental impact and ensures compliance with requirements according to environmental legislation of Vietnam & the highest standards of corporation.
It can be said that the event of successfully co-processing HCFCs is a big turning point in protecting the ozone layer in Vietnam, contributing to raise awareness of people, especially enterprises, to jointly fight against the climate change.

INSEE Ecocycle treated HCFC under the supervision and support of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the Green Development Center and Japanese experts