Waste Management to Develop New Organics Facility
Facility will process food, yard and clean demolition wood waste from South Florida residents and businesses to create organic compost products
Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM), today announced it is developing a new organics facility in Okeechobee, Florida. The facility will process yard, food and clean wood waste to create value added soil amendments as well as bagged lawn and garden products.
The facility, located adjacent to Waste Management’s existing Okeechobee Landfill operation, is the company’s first dedicated organics composting site in Florida. The eight acre site will offer organics recycling services to the South Florida region with operations expected to begin in the spring of 2011.
“We want to extract the highest value possible from the materials we manage. Recycling organics through composting and other technologies that may produce energy, transportation fuels or specialty chemicals enables us to generate more value from this specific material stream,” said Tim Hawkins, market area vice president for Waste Management. “With this facility, we will be able to offer southern Florida customers dedicated organics processing capability as well as generate beneficially useful products such as nutrient-rich organic compost that can close the loop with local homes and businesses in South Florida.
The Okeechobee facility is part of Waste Management’s expansion of its organics recycling solutions and key to developing new, high value-added end markets for organic materials and accelerating the growth of organics recycling across North America. Waste Management recently acquired a majority equity interest in Garick LLC, a leading manufacturer, marketer and distributor of organic lawn and garden products, which has served to expand Waste Management’s organics recycling capabilities to over 1 million tons. The company has also invested in new and emerging technologies to convert organic energy into transportation fuels, and ultimately, petrochemicals and chemicals.
The market for composting services is growing as consumers are increasingly demanding alternatives to conventional fertilizers for lawn and garden care, and municipalities and companies are seeking to increase the recycling of organic materials for beneficial use. Organic compost is considered a part of the green retail market, which has been growing at 20 percent annually.
North America generates over 80 million tons of organic waste each year. In the United States, approximately a third of municipal solid waste is organic, including food, yard and wood waste. Approximately 65 percent of yard waste and 2.5 percent of food waste collected in the United States is currently diverted from disposal.
ABOUT WASTE MANAGEMENT
Waste Management, Inc., based in Houston, Texas, is the leading provider of comprehensive waste management services in North America. Through its subsidiaries, the company provides collection, transfer, recycling and resource recovery, and disposal services. It is the largest recycler in North America as well as a leading developer, operator and owner of waste-to-energy and landfill gas-to-energy facilities in the United States. The company’s customers include residential, commercial, industrial, and municipal customers throughout North America. To learn more information about Waste Management visit www.wm.com or www.thinkgreen.com.