One Man's Trash is Another Man's Treasure (aka Methane)?
Food scraps and other compost material are commonly thrown out-- but advocates urge to save these scraps for compost instead. But what if we told you that throwing these scraps away can actually help the environment? Don't get us wrong, we welcome compost (see "The Taste of Compost: Made Nutritious with Microorganisms"), but sometimes, the best solution might be to throw it out when the bin is overflowing. Sending central Iowa yard waste to the landfill rather than the compost facility could reduce Metro Waste Authority's annual greenhouse gas emissions by 11 percent, according to a study conducted by SCS Engineers of West Des Moines. How is this possible? Simply because of Des Moines's new methane recovery facility. The landfill annually receives more than half a million tons of trash or roughly 18 percent of the state's total trash haul. The waste produces enough methane to power about 11,500 homes. According to Metro Waste, that could climb to 17,700 homes by 2035 if yard waste is redirected to the landfill. Yard waste is essentially classified as compost scraps. "(Yard waste) is something that breaks down, and we've got the methane system to capture it," said Reo Menning, executive director of Metro Waste Authority. Read more at the DSM Register. We throw tomatoes with fungus on them at the Pantry Garden whenever we have tomatoes on them. 1, the fungus isn't the best for compost, and 2, now it can go towards powering homes! So, whenever you have too much compost, Central Iowa, feel free to throw away the scraps.
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