The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
British Supermarket to Power Itself Solely With Food Waste
It's good to refrain from wasting energy, but it's even better to procure energy from items that you otherwise would waste.
That's the thinking behind the latest announcement from Sainsbury's, the second largest chain of supermarkets in the United Kingdom. The chain's Cannock location will soon be powered solely by the company's own food waste. Waste management and recycling firm Biffa has partnered with the store to use its advanced anaerobic digestion (AD) facilities and a power link that allows the Cannock store to use the waste generated from Sainsbury's other locations.
"This groundbreaking project helps to close the loop on food recycling and [allows] Sainsbury’s to continue to send zero operational waste to landfills," reads the chain's announcement.
Biffa trucks pick up Sainsbury's food waste to take it to its AD plant. From there, large silos break down the waste in a process Sainsbury's compares to the human stomach. The gas generates electricity, which supplies the Cannock store through a nine-mile cable. Any surplus energy returns to the national electricity grid.
Sainsbury's is already the UK's largest AD user, generating enough energy to power 2,500 homes.
Despite the company's plan, energy is not its first choice for using the company's food waste. The AD process only comes into play if certain foods are not purchased and thereafter deemed unsuitable for charitable donations or the creation of animal feed.
In France, chain Intermarché has announced a humorous initiative to take advantage of fruits and vegetables that would otherwise be wasted. Meanwhile, Chicago café Sandwich Me In makes use of every bit of waste it generates.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
Talk is cheap, says the acting executive secretary of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, who begged governments around the world to make sure that 2020 is not another year of conferences and empty promises, but instead is the year to take decisive action to stop the mass extinction of wildlife and the destruction of habitat-sustaining ecosystems, as The Guardian reported.
By Tara Lohan
A sign at the north end of Kanab, Utah, proclaims the town of 4,300 to be "The Greatest Earth on Show."