Friday, October 12, 2012

On the Road to Zero Waste, Contest

 -- Positive News --

I was pleased to hear that Surrey, BC (Canada) is going to build a 68 million organic bio-fuel facility that will be able to process 80,000 tons of organics annually. Surrey will collect kitchen and yard organic waste from more than 100,000 homes diverting it to the facility, aiding them in reaching their 70% zero waste initiative by 2015. The facility will then process the organic waste creating a natural gas bio-fuel which will then be used to power the waste collection vehicles. The "waste" product from the facility will be humus (the finished product from composting) which can be distributed to city parks, local gardeners and farmers, etc. Keeping organics out of the landfill and building healthy soil is a huge step towards a sustainable planet.

Some waste-to-energy facilities that burn trash are quite controversial, as opposed to those that collect gases released from decomposing waste (as mentioned above). Burning trash is not always the most popular alternative – as only about 20% of the energy given off in the burn process can be collected and used by consumers. The start up costs of facilities like these can be very big – $5-10 million – and then there are the air pollution and toxic ash issues. There is no doubt, however, that the incinerating industry has greatly improved over the years reducing off gassing and pollution issues, and there are more efficient technologies being employed to collect energy from the processing.

As such recycling and composting is much preferred, but for waste that is not feasibly recyclable this may be an alternative to burying trash in holes in the ground, which has its own set of problems. In isolated populations where land availability is an issue, they often have to ship their waste on large boats across bodies of water, where the items can spill over the sides or be picked up by strong winds on the sea. 

One thing that we do know - landfills don't stimulate the economy as much as recycling, reuse, composting and waste-to-energy facilities do.  To learn more about the R's of Zero Waste (rethink, refuse, reduce, reuse/re-purpose, recycle) and composting check out our Trash Talk series via the store page @:

-- Contest --  - is hosting a contest for the most popular blogs... 

Voting starts on the 7th - with one topic for each week. 

Example: 7th-13th people will vote for "biggest heart", 14th-20th will be "best layout", etc. 

Visit the site (above) and look for a poll widget for voting - where you can nominate our blog, or others of your choosing. Voters are then entered in a contest to win a variety of book prizes. Drop by the site throughout October to vote for your favorite blog in each category.

Find Dave and Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, their radio program, blog, and more at: * Support the Brummets by telling your friends, clicking those social networking buttons, or visiting the Brummet's Store - and help raise funds for charity as well!

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