Anaerobic digestion occurs naturally, in the lack of oxygen, as microorganisms break down biodegradable materials (like food waste). The two traditional anaerobic digestive processes (Mesophilic and Thermophilic digestion) generally require temperatures ranging from 20 – 70°C. While reducing the amount of organic materials, this recycling method produces biogas which could (and should!) be used as an energy source.
This innovation is frequently utilized throughout the USA to break down sewer sludge at wastewater treatment enters. In the previous couple of years, there has been a tendency to start adding food waste to anaerobic digesters.
The anaerobic digestion of food waste has numerous benefits, consisting of:
Improving the Situation With Climate Change
Food waste generates 3.3 billions tons of carbon dioxide, which accelerates global climate change. It also produces methane, a powerful greenhouse gas. Full product destruction and diversion from landfill to recycling facilities enables the capturing of the methane, which could be used as an energy source. On top of the lowered methane emissions at landfills, there are greenhouse gas emissions reductions due to the energy offsets provided by using an on-site, renewable source of energy.
Food manufacturers and distributors can expect to see cost savings from recycling their food waste. As energy costs continuously climb up and also our country looks towards renewable energy generation as well as energy self-reliance, using alternative fuel is especially relevant. Anaerobic digestion is also on of the best methods to avoid disposal and landfill bans, turning organic food waste into favorable value. iSustain Recycling also offers the ethanol production, which is another energy source used in fuel cell for stationary power and automobiles.
Soil Improvement Opportunities
Once nutrients have been collected during anaerobic digestion, they can be dispersed in safe quantities as soil additives and fertilizers to improve crop production and health.
Why Food Waste?
Food waste is the second biggest group of waste sent in the USA, representing approximately 18% of the waste stream. Each year, over 30 million tons of food waste is sent to landfills. Of the much less compared to 3% of food waste presently being drawn away from landfills, most of it is being composted to create a plant food.
Very often food and organic waste collected from manufacturers and distributors for the anaerobic digestion can be mixed with all kinds of unwanted or difficult to process debris. In many situations there needs to be a pretreatment solution, which implies involving industrial grinders to ensure that the unwanted debris is cut down to size and will not clog or damage downstream equipment. Unlike biosolids and animal manures, post consumer food scraps have actually had no means of prior energy capture. Actually, food waste has THREE TIMES the methane production potential as biosolids!
Whether you currently have a food scrap recycling program or not, a call to iSustain is worth your while. We can often find additional recycling options for both your food and non-food manufacturing waste. With you, it is possible to eliminate landfills. Contact us today, and our professionals will develop a solution.