Vilokan is creating a new global market
The Vilokan Group was commissioned to recover glycol at all of Sweden’s airports. This opens the door to a new global market, as there is increasing pressure on airport operators to take care of de-icing fluids and other liquid waste. Although de-icing a single aircraft can consume up to 1,000 litres of glycol, often with a lot of chemical additives, by no means all airports are taking care of these liquids.
Propylene glycol needs an incredible amount of oxygen to break it down, so this is an environmental problem. There is also cadmium and other heavy metals in the waste water and other liquids. So the question is no longer whether airports should start to recycle, but when.
In an international comparison, Sweden and Vilokan have been pioneers in this area, and the Swedish Civil Aviation Administration was among the first to draw up plans for handling de-icing fluids and other liquid waste.
But where de-icing fluids are collected for processing, in Sweden and elsewhere, the water is almost always taken by tanker for further treatment in a purification plant.
Vilokan’s technology, on the other hand, means that both de-icing fluids and other liquid waste can be purified and recycled locally at the airport. As the technology is offered as a service, it allows the airport operator to handle environmentally hazardous waste without tying up capital in bespoke infrastructure.
This eliminates the need for heavy transports, and Vilokan is able to establish a business based on glycol, a raw material that is traded around the world for between SEK 10 and 14 per litre. This means that Vilokan can set up a facility, clean the water and make a profit from the deal by providing access to the raw material. That creates a circular economy.