Z-BestOrganicCompost is produced from 100 percent recycled yard trimmings, so it qualifies toward LEED certification points. Z-BestOrganicCompost is produced from 100 percent recycled yard trimmings, so it qualifies toward LEED certification points.
OrganicCompost is a helpful addition for heavy clay soils and is an effective pre-plant conditioner for new lawns and gardens. The Z-Best Composting Facility (Z-Best) is located in Santa Clara County near the City of Gilroy.
Yard trimmings arriving at Z-Best are weighed and recorded and off-loaded directly In the composting area. During the 14-18 week composting period, windrows are monitored daily for temperature and moisture.
When fully composted, the materials are transported to a screen for final processing and marked as organic compost. In January 2001, Z-Best began its post consumer organics program after applying for and obtaining a full solid waste facility permit from the Cal Recycle.
Currently, the facility accepts up to 600 tons per day of these waste materials from commercial establishments and area Cities. At the Z-Best facility, all materials are processed in an enclosed 20,000 square foot building to remove non-compostable items.
Compost samples from both operations are sent monthly to an independent laboratory to be tested for nutrient value, contamination and pathogen reduction as per State of California requirements. The Z-BestCompost is certified by the MRI as organic approved by the California Department of Food and Agriculture for use on farms, gardens and nurseries and marketed as our landscape compost.
At Z-Best Composting Facility automated aeration and membrane laminate covers are mechanisms used to consistently control temperature and oxygen levels in the piles. Please contact Beta Ochoa at 408-313-0444 for any questions regarding wholesale purchases of our products.
CCC currently authorizes Edgar & Associates as its Lobbying Firm, but may use alternative or additional representation should it become necessary to properly address issues of concern to its members. CCC maintains an Executive Committee which makes all functional and policy decisions for the coalition.
The Executive Committee holds regularly-scheduled meetings or teleconferences to address CCC management or policy needs and maintain continuity. General membership meetings/teleconferences, and regular communication will be provided to keep members informed of CCC policy decisions and activities.
The CCC will develop and maintain a Work Plan which is made available to members and other industry stakeholders. For instance, should particular legislation or regulatory activity develop impacting composting industry members, industry-wide support may be required for the issue to be effectively addressed.
Only individuals authorized by the Executive Committee may speak on behalf of the California Compost Coalition. When the new facility becomes operational next month, an automated system, along with hand sorters, will pull out those plastic, glass, and other recyclables before being sent to the landfill.
The new system will also give the added bonus of diverting food waste. Compost is then sold to retail outlets, agricultural and landscaping businesses.
Waste is collected from all city facilities, including San Jose Min eta International Airport, Scenery Convention Center, public libraries, community centers, and litter cans along sidewalks and at parks, libraries, and other public spaces. Other efforts by the city to reduce waste include maximizing recycling at key public venues and at the city’s larger community events such as Cinco de Mayo celebration and the jazz festival.
Rhodes Yep sen COMPOSTING mixed municipal solid waste (MSW) is an attractive solution for many communities that want to divert organics from landfills, but don’t have the population density to support a source separated organics (SSO) scheme. Most recently, the plant in Cobb County, Georgia, built to process 200 tons/day of mixed waste, was converted into a materials recycling facility (MRF).
“In the European Union we’re seeing a push for biomechanical waste processing, but that’s in response to mandatory landfill diversion goals,” says Robert Spencer, an environmental planner who helped start up a few MSW composting facilities, including Cobb County. “Without a mandate, economics rule, and right now there aren’t many places in the U.S. with the right conditions.” Ultimately, the success of MSW composting facilities comes down to site-specific circumstances, such as area landfill fees, local government commitment and possible markets for MSW compost.
“Also, the most successful plants in the U.S. are co-sited with a landfill, which allows for internalized residuals disposal cost and a destination for possible off-spec compost as cover material.” The MSW composting facility in Delaware County, New York is colocated with a landfill, and Susan McIntyre agrees that this is significant. “Quite a few municipalities tour our MSW composting facility and are interested, but it’s difficult to determine how viable it would be for them,” says McIntyre, Solid Waste Director of the Delaware County, Department of Public Works.
“While rebuilding the facility, we buried our waste in the landfill, and it was definitely a lot easier than the composting process. But now that our system is running again, we are making something of that waste.” This year’s Bicycle survey found only one request for proposal (RFP) for a MSW composting facility, in Gillette, Wyoming.
Mariposa County has only 18,000 residents, so most of the material is generated by the 3.5 million visitors to Yosemite National Park. No equipment changes were made at the facility in 2009, although a consultant was hired to help reevaluate the processing/sort line.
Delaware North Company (DNC), Yosemite’s concessionaire, and Total Waste Systems, the franchise hauler, have been working with Mariposa County to develop a commercial food waste program for Yosemite National Park. “DNC’s hotels in the park have switched to compostable products, such as cutlery, clamshells and hot cups, and they collect food waste in colored compostable garbage bags that can be easily differentiated from garbage,” says Michelle Miller, Solid Waste and Recycling Manager for Mariposa County Public Works.
Grants from the California State Department of Conservation have sponsored education and outreach programs to encourage recycling. “Although we were more selective in the past, the economics of running the facility have required us to take in MSW loads with more contamination, resulting in about 35 percent residue.” Last year the facility reported 20 to 25 percent residue, and was accepting loads of source separated organics.
McCarthy explains that sources of pure organics are currently limited in the area, and often are taken by facilities with simple technologies and lower fees, such as farms. To maintain the quality of the finished compost, operators are paying extra attention to materials on the tip floor, and are talking to residents and haulers about presorting.
“The improvement can be attributed to more participation in recycling, more enforcement of separation and increased efficiency at our facility,” says Nathan Widely, plant manager for Waste Options, Inc., which manages the island’s landfill, MRF and MSW composting facility. “The residents are increasingly aware of the value of recycling, and we’re training our haulers to not accept garbage with glass or tin cans.
Improvements in the past two years include new blowers for the aerated windrows, biofilter maintenance and screen repairs. “Our compost was always fairly free of glass and plastic, but now it is even cleaner, simply from fine-tuning the existing system and replacing worn items such as bearings and springs,” explains Widely.
“We’ve also become more systematic about water use, installing a gauge to monitor how much goes in, and are more consistent with the feed of biosolids, resulting in a better finished product.” Of the 15,000 cubic yards (CY) produced, approximately half is sold for $15/CY, with the balance used for landfill capping and facility landscaping. “We’ve kept meticulous daily time and temperature records since we started, and have always been in compliance with our permits, which was really important for being approved for carbon credits,” notes Widely.
“Prior to Waste Options taking over the operation and constructing a composting facility, everything was dumped in the old landfill, including MSW, biosolids and bulky items,” says Widely. “We don’t have a population base for SSO, but we do sometimes get loads of food waste from processors,” says Mark Batman, Director of Prairie land.
Located at the Gallatin County transfer station near the West entrance to Yellowstone and built on a closed landfill, the composting plant was designed to process 6,000 tons/year of mixed waste. “Basically, the designed system is at overcapacity in the summer and underutilized the remainder of the year,” says Kathy O’Her, who recently left her job as plant manager to join the Montana Department of Environmental Quality.
The 7-inch minus fraction is conveyed to a Luck/Now Mixer, where manure, wood chips and straw and hay are added. “The facility originally received biosolids, but that was problematic for the scoreless auger conveyors,” explains O’Her.
The building housing the operation is constructed of stainless steel to resist corrosion, and is under negative pressure. “Thermocouples are inexpensive and relatively accurate, but require a signal translator, and we were having issues with reliability,” says Susan McIntyre.
The Rods, provided by Athena Controls, are hard-wired to a small LCD panel without a signal translator, providing more accurate readings that can be downloaded onto a computer.” Other changes include replacing the biofilter media, which took three days this summer. “We have the capacity, a new agitator and several years of successful MSW management, so we’ll be accepting SSO streams on a case-by-case basis,” she adds.
For example, Delaware County will take food waste from the upcoming New York State Association for Reduction, Reuse and Recycling (NYSAR3) conference in November. The MSW is sorted for recyclables using an electromagnet, eddy current and picking lines before entering a Rommel screen, sized at two-inch minus.
An air classifier is used to blow out lightweight plastic before the MSW enters the composting facility. “We have a bid opening for plant operation for the next five years, so things could change in 2010,” says William J. Stravinsky, Medina County Solid Waste District Coordinator.
“The biofilter was constructed in 2003, when the facility opened, and we’ve had to replace the media once before, but this time we are using less wood and more rock, with the hopes that it will work better.” Rapid City has a new arrangement with Gillette, Wyoming, in which it accepts commingled recyclables into its MRF in exchange for MSW compost. “Gillette has experienced tremendous population growth, jumping from 12,000 people in 1990 to 32,000 in 2007, and total MSW generation has increased about 12 percent per year,” says Mark Swan, with the Campbell County Department of Public Works.
We struck a deal with Rapid City where we bring them our commingled recyclables, minus cardboard and paper, about every 10 days. They accept them at no cost and market the materials, and we return to Gillette with a free 20-ton load of MSW compost, which is used for reclamation projects at our landfill.
The facility essentially works the same as before, with MSW loaded into one of five rotating drums for three days, screened, then composted in windrows. This allows us to operate more efficiently and produce a lot more finished product from the same throughput of materials.” Leonard explains that when the old facility was originally designed, material was composted in aerated static piles.
Now we have a lot of good finished compost.” The fabric buildings, manufactured by Cover-All, are resistant to corrosion and kept under negative pressure, with air sent to two separate biofilters. Before the new buildings were constructed, Leonard took advantage of the easy access to the drums and replaced 80-foot sections in the middle of two older units.
In the old system, material left the rotating drums and fell onto a series of conveyors leading to an ancient Rommel screen. “Having multiple conveyors also caused a host of problems, with a fence post or other bulky items getting caught and jamming the whole system for hours.
“It takes 30 minutes to fill a container, with the conveyor rotating back and forth for even distribution,” notes Leonard. “We are also meeting with an ethanol company that is working with farmers to increase the production of switchgrass, possibly by using our compost, ” says Leonard.