Ragn-Sells awarded as ”Circular promoter of the year”

Ragn-Sells awarded as ”Circular promoter of the year”

The environmental company Ragn-Sells has been named “Circular promoter of the year” at the Recycling Gala in Stockholm. The jury noted that Ragn-Sells has developed a new technology to extract the nutrient phosphorus from sewage sludge, and at the same time pushed for public procurement to award products of recycled material.

01 Feb 2019

- We are extremely happy and proud of the award. A circular economy is a must if we shall become a sustainable society, where we play a key role through both innovation and public opinion, says Ragn-Sells’ sustainability manager Pär Larshans, who received the award on stage.

The award "Circular promoter of the year" goes to an organization or company who has "shown a new way of thinking" and "thereby contributed to building a circular community". The jury addressed Ragn-Sells' technology for extracting phosphorus from incinerated waste sludge, developed by Ragn- Ragn-Sells' innovation company EasyMining and world-patented under the name Ash2Phos.

- The EU is completely dependent on imported phosphorus for agriculture, but the world's largest deposits are on occupied land in Western Sahara and are contaminated by heavy metals. By ensuring that valuable phosphorus in sewage sludge is extracted and stays in the circulation, we can free ourselves from that dependence, says Pär Larshans.

The jury also highlighted Ragn-Sells work to show how Swedish municipalities can claim recycled material in their public procurement. A survey in 2018 showed that only a handful of municipalities make any kind of demands. Since then, Ragn-Sells has praised the good examples and conducted a dialogue with many municipalities that want to change their way of procuring.

- The municipalities buy goods and services for more than SEK 300 billion every year. By demanding more recycled materials, they could give the transition to a circular economy a huge push forward, says Pär Larshans.

Without phosphorus as nutrition in agriculture, the world's crops would be dimidiated. Today, the phosphorus in fertilizers comes from apatite mines. About 80 percent of the world's deposits are found in Western Sahara, in areas occupied by Morocco. The phosphate from the mines contains high levels of cadmium, uranium and arsenic, among others.