Green Foundry LIFE - Inorganic binder system to minimize emissions, improve indoor air quality, purify and reuse of contaminated foundry sand

LIFE17 ENV/FI/000173

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Contact details:

Contact person: Sara Tapola
Tel: 358405002055
Email: sara.tapola@ax.fi

Project description:


The EU's foundry industry employs more than 290 000 people. In addition, foundries play a key role in other industries, providing various cast components for the automotve, shipbuilding, and construction sectors. The application of modern sand-moulding systems based on inorganic binders would have a significant positive environmental and economic impact and make Europe's foundries more competitive


Green Foundry LIFE will introduce novel technologies for sand-moulding systems to cut emissions, improve indoor air quality and support the circular economy through re-use of foundry sand that is normally landfilled. This will involve replacing organic binders with inorganic binders when making sand moulds and cores for the casting process. Organic binders emit hazardous casting fumes and fine particles such as binder aerosols. By accelerating the uptake of inorganic binders, the project would have a significant impact on reducing hazardous emissions and improving indoor air quality for foundry workers. The new process will also use less sand, water and energy. Results from pilot foundries in Finland and Italy will be shared with the industry, including through practical tools for implementation of best practice. Green Foundry LIFE will publish its best available techniques for the introduction of inorganic binder systems in iron and steel foundries and submit them for inclusion in the next iteration of the EU Smitheries and Foundries BREF (Best Available Techniques Reference document).

This LIFE project directly relates to the section of the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) that refers to projects developing and testing pollution prevention and abatement techniques. Green Foundry LIFE will involve partners in Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Poland and Spain.

Expected results:

  • 80% reduction for a given foundry of hazardous airborne emissions, including ambient air improvement and reduced local health risk and odour nuisance;
  • 70% improvement in indoor health for a given foundry;
  • 75% of hazardous surplus foundry sand recycled;
  • Two pilot foundries (Karhula Foundry, Finland; FOM Tacconi, Italy) will implement the inorganic binder system in everyday practices by the end of the project;
  • Mass balance calculations of different inorganic binder systems compared with organic binder systems (furan, phenol and green sand) that will quantify in detail the maximum positive environmental impact;
  • Detailed total emission and indoor air quality measurements in three different inorganic pilot foundries, and two organic binder system pilot foundries in Europe;
  • A feasibility report on the best practices for recycling and reuse of foundry sand based on a comparison of different inorganic and organic surplus foundry sand purification and reuse methods;
  • A new BAT publication describing the implementation of inorganic binder systems in technical, economic and environmental terms; and
  • 300 foundries to implement the inorganic binder system within five years of the end of the project.

  • Results

    Results to be published at the end of the project


Environmental issues addressed:


Air & Noise - Air pollutants
Waste - Industrial waste


human exposure to pollutants‚  air quality management‚  air pollution‚  hazardous waste‚  resource conservation

Target EU Legislation

  • Industry and Product Policy
  • Directive 2010/75 - Industrial emissions (integrated pollution prevention and control) (24.11.201 ...
  • Waste
  • COM(2015)614 - "Closing the loop - An EU action plan for the Circular Economy" (02.12.2015)
  • Air
  • Directive 2008/50/EC - Ambient air quality and cleaner air for Europe (21.05.2008)

Natura 2000 sites

Not applicable



Coordinator Meehanite Technology Oy
Type of organisation Large enterprise
Description Meehanite Technology Oy is a consulting company that specialises in industrial environmental problems, including air quality, noise pollution, energy efficiency, emissions of volatile organic compounds, occupational health issues, EU funding programmes, material efficiency, and foundry technologies.
Partners Association of Finnish Foundry Industry, Finland Dipartimento d'Ingegneria - University of Perugia, Italy AX - LVI Consulting Ltd, Finland FUNDICIONES ARABA, Spain Foundryteam OY, Finland Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung e.V. (IFAM), Germany Karhula Foundry Oy, Finland Eurofins Viljavuuspalvelu Oy, Finland Centre Technique des Industries de la Fonderie, France AGH University of Science and Technology, Poland


Project reference LIFE17 ENV/FI/000173
Duration 01-JUL-2018 to 30-JUN -2021
Total budget 2,088,998.00 €
EU contribution 1,216,781.00 €
Project location Schleswig-Holstein(Deutschland) Hamburg(Deutschland) Niedersachsen(Deutschland) Bremen(Deutschland) Nordrhein-Westfalen(Deutschland) Hessen(Deutschland) Rheinland-Pfalz(Deutschland) Baden-Württemberg(Deutschland) Bayern(Deutschland) Saarland(Deutschland) Berlin(Deutschland) Brandenburg(Deutschland) Mecklenburg-Vorpommern(Deutschland) Sachsen(Deutschland) Sachsen-Anhalt(Deutschland) Thüringen(Deutschland) Galicia(España) Asturias(España) Cantabria(España) País Vasco(España) Navarra(España) Rioja(España) Aragón(España) Madrid(España) Castilla-León(España) Castilla-La Mancha(España) Extremadura(España) Cataluña(España) Comunidad Valenciana(España) Baleares(España) Andalucía(España) Murcia(España) Ceuta y Melilla(España) Canarias(España) Île,de,France(France) Champagne-Ardennes(France) Picardie(France) Haute-Normandie(France) Centre(France) Basse-Normandie(France) Bourgogne(France) Nord-Pas-De-Calais(France) Lorraine(France) Alsace(France) Franche-Comté(France) Pays de la Loire(France) Bretagne(France) Poitou-Charentes(France) Aquitaine(France) Midi-Pyrénées(France) Limousin(France) Rhône-Alpes(France) Auvergne(France) Languedoc-Roussillon(France) Provence-Alpes-Côte d' Azur(France) Corse(France) Guadeloupe(France) Martinique(France) Guyane(France) Réunion(France) Uusimaa(Finland Suomi) Varsinais-Suomi(Finland Suomi) Satakunta(Finland Suomi) Häme(Finland Suomi) Pirkanmaa(Finland Suomi) Päijät-Häme(Finland Suomi) Kymenlaakso(Finland Suomi) Etelä-Karjala(Finland Suomi) Etelä-Savo(Finland Suomi) Pohjois-Savo(Finland Suomi) Pohjois-Karjala(Finland Suomi) Kainuu(Finland Suomi) Keski-Suomi(Finland Suomi) Etelä-Pohjanmaa(Finland Suomi) Vaasan rannikkoseutu(Finland Suomi) Keski-Pohjanmaa(Finland Suomi) Pohjois-Pohjanmaa(Finland Suomi) Lappi(Finland Suomi) Ahvenanmaa/Åland(Finland Suomi) Baltic Sea Suomi (SF)(Finland Suomi) Piemonte(Italia) Valle d'Aosta(Italia) Liguria(Italia) Lombardia(Italia) Trentino-Alto Adige(Italia) Veneto(Italia) Friuli-Venezia Giulia(Italia) Emilia-Romagna(Italia) Toscana(Italia) Umbria(Italia) Marche(Italia) Lazio(Italia) Campania(Italia) Abruzzo(Italia) Molise(Italia) Puglia(Italia) Basilicata(Italia) Calabria(Italia) Sicilia(Italia) Sardegna(Italia) Lodzkie(Poland Polska) Mazowieckie(Poland Polska) Malopolskie(Poland Polska) Slaskie(Poland Polska) Lubelskie(Poland Polska) Podkarpackie(Poland Polska) Swietokrzyskie(Poland Polska) Podlaskie(Poland Polska) Wielkopolskie(Poland Polska) Zachodniopomorskie(Poland Polska) Lubuskie(Poland Polska) Dolnoslaskie(Poland Polska) Opolskie(Poland Polska) Kujawsko-Pomorskie(Poland Polska) Warminsko-Mazurskie(Poland Polska) Pomorskie(Poland Polska) Extra-Regio(Poland Polska) Associated Poland (PL)(Poland Polska)


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