Waste management

Performant waste management practices help reduce health and environmental problems, reduce direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions and avoid negative impacts at local level such as landscape deterioration due to landfilling, local water and air pollution, as well as littering. MOL Group is committed towards reducing our impact on the environment and hence, waste management practices are in focus.

The European Union's approach to waste management is based on the "waste hierarchy" which sets the following priority order when shaping waste policy and managing waste at the operational level: prevention, (preparing for) reuse, recycling, recovery and, as the least preferred option, disposal (which includes landfilling and incineration without energy recovery). MOL Group’s waste management strategy is following these principles.

This waste management hierarchy means that our first priority is to prevent the generation of waste and reduce its amount as far as possible. Since there are technologies and processes which make waste generation unavoidable, we make constant efforts to reuse or recycle/recover these kinds of waste. If disposal is the only solution, it is managed responsibly, respecting all relevant legal requirements.

Information on waste quantities can be found in our annual report. The total amount of waste generated in MOL Group in 2017 was 224,371 tonnes. Out of this quantity 124,234 tonnes have been reused, recycled.

Total amount of waste by method of treatment in 2017


Hazardous waste by method of treatment - 2017


Non-hazardous waste by method of treatment - 2017


We maintain a Total Waste Management system, regulating all waste related processes. It focuses on efficiency-improvements, reducing the volume of disposed waste and increasing valued, reused, recycled or recovered waste. The basic pillars of the system are legal compliance and the follow up / documentation of the processes. To supply our requirements and to reduce waste management costs we have long-term waste management contracts.




In the past year the E&P business was responsible for 22% of the total waste generated by MOL Group, being an important contributor to the Group figures (second largest after Downstream)

Most of the wastes produced by the operations of the Exploration-Production Division (50-55%) are drilling muds. As a result of the presently applied best available technology (BAT), none of the materials used for drilling mud belong to the category of dangerous materials, thus during our operations we do not produce any dangerous waste under ordinary circumstances. These wastes are dominantly utilised.

The other main group of wastes includes oily mud waste from tank cleaning operations and this is classified as a hazardous material. The mud produced during large tank cleaning operations is first centrifuged in order to reduce the volume, then the separated liquid is re-injected into deep underground reservoirs in accordance with the relevant permits, thus the volume of materials to be decontaminated is significantly lessened.

Our future target is to further reduce the quantity of waste by applying “waste-poor” technologies and enhancing the de-hydration of tank mud.


MOL Group Logistic depots are primarily engaged in storing and distributing various oil and LPG products. The main waste flows of Logistics include materials from tank cleaning operations, oily mud produced during waste water treatment plants, construction and demolition debris during projects, as well as dangerous materials produced during the remediation of pollution associated with past operations. Our goals include deepening operationalisation of the waste management hierarchy into operative processes and further increasing the proportion of waste that is utilised. By quantity, Logistic business is a minor contributor to the MOL Group figures (under 10%).


Refining Division sites produce various fractions from crude oil as the basic feedstock for a number of end-products or other technologies. We can define different categories for the main waste flows such as wastes from production processes, including end-of-pipe technologies (e.g. waste from industrial wastewater treatment equipment), construction and demolition debris arising from projects, dangerous mud from tank farm cleaning/maintenance as well as wastes from maintenance processes. Our goals include further increasing the ratio of waste utilisation, reducing the quantity of waste and optimising the waste incineration plants.


The main waste flows can be categorised into two major groups. The first contains waste produced from olefin and polymer production, which also includes wastes generated from treatment of waste water produced during the said processes. The other group includes construction and demolition debris arising from projects.

The potential for reduction in the quantity of wastes is minor as production processes have already been optimized, thus our goal is to improve the ratio of waste utilisation along with increasing cost efficiency.

The refining and petrochemical business are the main contributor to the total quantity of waste produced in MOL Group (over 50% each year) and the last three years average recycling rate is 75%.


Retail business, by quantity, is a minor contributor to MOL Group waste figures. The split of hazardous/non-hazardous waste was quite constant in the past years (in 2015 is was 44/56% hazardous to non-hazardous waste, in 2016 it was 46/54% while in 2017 it was 41/59%). Our assumption is that by 2020, these quantities of waste will increase and diversify due to the modification of the business model and increased network coverage.

Using the retail network from five countries, we are running a client oriented campaign to collect used cooking oil. A total of 272.82 tonnes of cooking oil was collected in 2017, which represents an increase of 15% compared with 2016.


Lubricants and Autochemicals are produced and sold by MOL Group’s lubricant subsidiaries. These companies pay special attention to product stewardship as they are capable of recollecting and recycling a significant percentage of lubricant-related waste which is produced by industrial as well as residential customers. Used lubricants are most typically recycled in our bitumen production processes but the method varies by country.

MOL-LUB – our Hungarian subsidiary – introduced recycled PET packaging for its autochemical products to the market in 2012.

The amount of waste lubricants and packaging materials recollected from customers is presented in the table below. The figures cover operations in Hungary (MOL-LUB), Croatia (Maziva) and Slovakia (Slovnaft) where the recollection of lubricants is performed or coordinated directly by MOL Group.

  2016 2017 Change 2016-2017 (%)
Recollected and treated lubricants 9,201 10,725 17
Recollected packaging of lubricants 1,149 1,267 10
Total 10,350 11,992 16