Connecticut food waste AD, compost plant receives permit to build

By Anna Simet | March 01, 2017

Turning Earth LLC announced it that it has received a permit from the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Production to construct a $20 million composting and anaerobic digestion (AD) plant from in Southington, Connecticut.

Along with its partner, Aikan A/S, Turning Earth plans to build an integrated, dry fermentation high-solids AD plant, as well as an in-vessel composting facility, to take in municipal and commercial organic waste streams from over 16 municipalities and communities in central Connecticut.

Turning Earth received initial building permission from the town of Southington in June 2014, and its New Source Review Permit from the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Bureau of Air Management in January 2016.

The proposed organics recycling facility is slated to open in mid-2018, according to Turning Earth, and will annually convert 50,000 tons per year of source-separated organics and 25,000 tons of leaf, woody and yard waste into a number of valuable resources including 1.4 MW of power, and 40,000 cubic yards of compost and soils.

Turning Earth pointed to the state’s food waste diversion and organic waste recycling regulations as an impetus to build the plant. Connecticut was the first state to regulate food waste disposal when it passed a 2011 law that bans commercial food waste from landfills. It requires commercial food wholesalers or distributors, industrial food manufacturers or processors, supermarkets, resorts or conference centers that generate an annual volume of 104 or more tons per year, or two or more tons per week, of source-separated organic material to ensure its materials are recycled if it is located within 20 miles of a permitted recycling facility that can accept the materials.

The regulations were also a driver for Quantum Biopower, which recently completed construction of the state’s first food waste-based biogas plant, also in Southington.