Republic Services Inc., Phoenix, announced on Dec. 1 that it has opened the Sacramento area’s first organics preprocessing facility, which will help local communities divert food waste from landfills and turn it into renewable energy.
A new California state law, SB 1383, aimed at combating climate change takes effect Jan. 1, 2022, and will require the majority of California homes and businesses to recycle food and yard waste at facilities such as this one.
“Republic Services is proud to offer solutions to support California’s climate goals and the effort to recycle food waste,” Mike Caprio, Republic area president, says. “As one of the largest recyclers and composters in the state, we continue to invest in infrastructure that will help our customers reduce their impact and provide a circular solution.”
Republic’s new facility accepts food waste collected from businesses in Sacramento County. The operation removes contamination such as plastic bags and produces clean organic material that is delivered to an anaerobic digestion facility. This facility converts the organic material into renewable energy that is used to power the facility and, ultimately, could be sold to the public utility grid.
The new Sacramento facility is capable of processing 40,000 pounds of food waste per hour. This is Republic’s third organics preprocessing operation, all of which are in California. The company also owns and operates six composting facilities in the state. In 2020, Republic processed more than 2.15 billion pounds of food and yard waste.
The company, which was named 2020 Organics Recycler of the Year by the National Waste & Recycling Association, says organics recycling directly supports its sustainability goal to increase recovery and circularity of key materials from the waste stream by 40 percent by 2030.