Organics Collection Pilot in Newton Schools

Original post from Green Cart Chronicle Summer 2019 Edition – 

In January 2019, organics collection was launched in the cafeteria of two Newton schools, Angier Elementary School and Zervas Elementary School. Each lunch period, students sort their waste into three categories of waste: trash, recycling, and organics. Organic material includes food waste, napkins, and other compostable material.

The organic material is hauled from the schools by a vendor to Charlestown, MA. The Charlestown facility turns the food waste into a slurry that is then anaerobically digested at a wastewater treatment facility. Anaerobic digestion is a process through which the organic material mass is reduced, producing methane gas, which is then used to generate energy. Solids remaining after anaerobic digestion are composted. DPW is working with NPS to add organics diversion in up to 12 more schools in the 2019-2020 school year.

ANAEROBIC DIGESTION VS COMPOSTING

Composting is a natural degradation process. The breakdown of organic matter occurs over time from exposure to oxygen, moisture, and naturally occurring bacteria. The result of the process is a humus material called compost.

Anaerobic digestion is a biological process by which microorganisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen, producing carbon dioxide and methane gas. The process is used for industrial or domestic purposes to reduce waste solids and produce renewable fuel that can be captured and used, offsetting the use of fossil fuels and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The remaining solids are then composted.

Students for a Greener World: Green Newton Series

Join us for the annual spring program produced and hosted by Students for a Greener World (SGW), Green Newton’s student group! At this lively presentation, students of all ages from Newton schools come together to show how they’re helping the environment through projects such as:

  • Angier Elementary School’s Cafeteria Recycling & Composting
  • Oak Hill Middle School’s Global Goals Exhibition
  • Newton South High School’s Capstone Healthy Landscaping Project
  • Newton North High School’s Student Climate March
  • SGW’s community environmental outreach 

Come Hear What Newton Students are Doing for the Environment on May 20

Please join Students for a Greener World showing how they are contributing to the sustainability of Newton and beyond. Highlighted will be:

  • Angier Elementary School’s Cafeteria Recycling & Composting
  • Oak Hill Middle School’s Global Goals Exhibition
  • Newton South High School’s Capstone Healthy Landscaping Project
  • Newton North High School’s Student Climate March
  • SGW’s community environmental outreach

Following these presentation and the Students for a Greener World (SGW) Wild Boar Awards, Green Newton will present the 2019 Green Newton Environmental Leadership Awards to the following recipients:

  • Individual: Andy Gluck
  • Local Organization: The Newton Citizens Commission on Energy
  • City Department:  Newton’s Public Buildings Department and Design Review Committee
  • Green Newton Special Appreciation Award: Ira Krepchin

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Event: Monday, May 20 at 7pm at the Newton Free Library (330 Homer St. Newton)

From: Green Newton