Waste is wasting our space! The waste problem increasingly presents hazardous conditions for our planet. Environmental experts have been working hard on the solution for how to save the environment. Phenomenal gains have been made in environmental research to address the waste problem. Still, more global awareness is needed to slow the impact of hazardous conditions on our environment.
Hanover County in North Carolina contributes to the cause for global environmental awareness through their new program for food waste collection. Food waste and organic material makes up more than half of New Hanover County’s landfill stream. The county’s composter, Huckleberry, can actually use 65-70% of the waste that goes into the landfill. The waste is treated at Huckleberry and needs to reach 131 degrees for 3 days. Pathogen reduction kills any seeds in the material. Then, it goes through a trommel and is then separated out and cured in bunkers for 11 more days. Finally, the product is spread out throughout the community at county-owned sites.
The composting of food scraps creates a product which can, ultimately, improve nutrients in the soil. By improving the quality of the soil, more crops are generated, and water quality is improved as well. The volume of trash overtaking landfills can then be reduced, thereby minimizing the level of hazardous conditions effecting our environment.
Already, the University of North Carolina Wilmington sends its food waste to the new program for food waste collection. Beginning in July, community residents will be allowed to dispose of any food waste to the management site, excluding hard matter such as bones. Residents will be able to dispose of food waste without paying any fees.
Although the program is just starting out, it appears to be full of potential. The repurposing of trash and the reduction of waste in the landfill is a step in the right direction. This path could be the key to resolving many hazardous conditions that impact our environment. If programs such as this one gain usage, it could mean a large increase in food waste programs everywhere.
According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, these Waste Wise award winners share details of their wasted food prevention strategies.
Prevent food waste at home. Visit https://www.epa.gov/recycle/reducing-wasted-food-home.