A concerted effort to beneficially reuse and recycle plant waste started in November 2006 when the chief financial officer of Hensley Industries complained about the soaring cost to landfill the facility's spent foundry sand. Tipping fees and transportation had peaked at just over $60,000 per month during mid-2006. Except for a portion of metal reclaimed from furnace operations, at that time Hensley didn't recycle anything.
The company's environmental team investigated potential beneficial reuse applications and end users for its spent foundry sand and furnace slag as well as options for recycling office paper, cardboard, and wood waste. With limited available physical space, logistic planning for material movement, segregation and storage were very important. Equipment and labor investment had to be minimal.
The company's environmental manager, with the help of the company's purchasing department, contacted a former colleague with TXI Rebase, a facility that produces roadbase materials. That company was interested in Hensley's foundry sand as a filler and stabilizer. Big City Concrete, a nearby rock and aggregate processor, was happy to team with Hensley to crush, separate, load, and transport the screened sand solids to the roadbase facility. Operation and transport costs were reduced from $60,000 per month to an average of $13,500.