Trenton – Legislation sponsored by Senate Environment and Energy Chair Senator Bob Smith and Senator Christopher Bateman, which would require certain generators of solid waste to separate and recycle food waste, passed the Senate today.
“Food waste in this country and in New Jersey is a major problem and a serious waste of resources. The purpose of this legislation is to encourage the construction of more food waste-to-energy facilities, which can use food waste to generate electricity,” said Senator Smith (D-Middlesex/Somerset). “This process will ensure a constant source of separated food waste at our sanitation facilities across the state.”
The bill, A-2371/S-865, would require certain generators of solid waste to separate and recycle food waste, and amend the definition of “Class I renewable energy.”
Specifically, under the bill, every large food waste generator that is located within 25 miles of an authorized food waste recycling facility and that generates an average projected volume of 52 or more tons per year of food waste within that radius would be required to source separate its food waste from other solid waste. They would then need to send that source separated food waste to an authorized food waste recycling facility that has available capacity and will accept it. This only applies to an individual establishment or location that generates an average projected volume of 52 or more tons per year of food waste; so individual schools would not apply.
Under the bill, if a large food waste generator is not located within 25 miles of an authorized food waste recycling facility, the generator may send the food waste for final disposal at a solid waste management facility. In addition, a large food waste generator would be deemed in compliance with the bill if the generator performs an enclosed, on-site composting waste or recycles food waste using an alternative authorized food waste recycling method.
Finally, recycling facilities would also be required to employ minority and women applicants that reside near the facility.
The bill was released from the Senate by a vote of 22-17.