The new Kroger Anaerobic Digester, located in Compton, is a great example of how food waste can be used to produce renewable energy rather than being sent to the landfill. Once sent to the landfill, organic material produces uncaptured methane, a Greenhouse Gas 25 times more potent than Carbon Dioxide.
The Kroger digester uses an enclosed, oxygen-free environment to promote anaerobic digestion, a naturally occurring process. Through the process, the carbon in organic material is turned into a renewable source of methane, which can be captured and used as low-carbon vehicle fuel or renewable energy.
According to the press release:
The anaerobic conversion system will process more than 55,000 tons of organic food waste into renewable energy annually and provide power for the over 650,000 square foot distribution center. By diverting that food waste - the equivalent of 150 tons per day - the system will also reduce area truck trips by more than 500,000 miles each year.
The Kroger Digester was designed by FEED Resource Recovery, Inc. a clean energy technology company out of Boston, Massachusetts. FEED specializes in Zero Waste solutions for the food industry, generating fertilizer and energy from food waste.
Similar to anaerobic digestion, composting is a great way to keep food waste and other organic materials out of the landfill. In fact, if all of California's food scraps were recycled via composting or anaerobic digestion facilities, our landfill emissions would be cut by more than 3 million tons of CO2/year.
That’s why CAW not only supports the Kroger project, but also AB 323 (Chesbro), which would require producers of large amounts of organic material such as food waste or yard debris to subscribe to a recycling service for the material. This policy will keep organic materials out of the landfill and create jobs by promoting the development of more facilities like the one in Compton, which is the second commercial scale food waste digester in California.
Photo Credit: PR Newswire