The new facilities at the El Mazo, located in Sierrapando (Torrelavega, Cantabria) were inaugurated in February of this year. The Government of the Autonomous Community of Cantabria, through the company MARE, invested aproximately €1 million in the implementation of three new waste management lines, which join the other two lines already in operation at El Mazo. The new facilities will be devoted to the production of solid recovered fuel, WEEE sorting and pretreatment of paper and board.


With a view to providing a solution to the problem of waste management in general, Medio Ambiente, Agua, Residuos y Energía de Cantabria, S.A., (MARE, S.A.) undertook this new project at the El Mazo facilities. The objective was to achieve centralised treatment of different waste streams, optimisation of resources and the management of such resources, through the use of waste as a fuel in combustion processes in cases where other forms of recovery were not feasible. In summary, the objectives of the work undertaken were to:

  • Recover municipal waste streams currently managed through landfill disposal.
  • Seek synergies with other waste management services provided by MARE, such as waste collection and storage in the Clean Point Network, to enable economic and environmental optimisation of processes.
  • Improve profitability of selectively collected waste.
  • Adapt the activity of El Mazo subsequent to closure of the the landfill, through the implementation of new sustainable operating processes that would enable maintenance of the human resources assigned to the facility.

The initiatives undertaken at the El Mazo facilities to achieve the aforementioned objectives can be summarised in the following production lines:

  • Paper-Board sorting and shredding line
  • Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF) production line
  • Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) sorting and dispatch line

The aim was that the implementation of these production lines, along with the other lines currently in operation (line for sorting of light packaging and baling of Paper and Board at the Recovery and Recycling Centre, and the compacting line at the Transfer Station) would enable the creation of synergies in order to achieve optimum management of the different waste streams, in accordance with the waste treatment hierarchy set out in environmental legislation.