Among many findings, the review identified the following key points:
Composting past and present: past and recent UK and European composting experience
shows a cycle of interest and then disinterest in composting of MSW, at present,
while it is generally agreed that composts made from source segregated materials
are likely to make higher quality composts, there is increasing interest in
composting mechanically segregated MSW feedstocks as part of an “MBT” process.
MBT, or mechanical biological treatment, allows a range of secondary materials
to be recovered, including compost, albeit of a lower grade.
and composition: the physical,
chemical and biological characteristics of mechanically segregated MSW are
highly variable. Contamination of the compostable fraction by trace elements
and “inerts” – i.e. non-compostables - appears to be an intractable problem,