- Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building - http://inhabitat.com -

1.9 Million Worms Chomp Down Airport Waste in North Carolina

Posted By Tafline Laylin On December 19, 2012 @ 8:01 am In carousel showcase,News,Recycling initiatives | No Comments

Charlotte Douglas International Airport, red wigglers, composting, fertilizer, recycling, recyclables, North Carolina, USA, food waste, divert waste from the landfill, news, environment, recycling initiatives

The Charlotte Douglas International Airport [1] in North Carolina has deployed 1.9 million worms to turn a boatload of organic waste into fertilizer [2]. Every day the airport housekeeping department headed by Bob Lucas processes 2.5 tons of waste, including plastic, clothing, aluminum [3] and food tossed out by rushed passengers, NPR reports. The recyclables are pulled out from the pile and sold and the organic waste is transferred to a giant composting bin where the army of red wigglers go to work.



Charlotte Douglas International Airport, red wigglers, composting, fertilizer, recycling, recyclables, North Carolina, USA, food waste, divert waste from the landfill, news, environment, recycling initiatives

The worms are stored in a 50 foot long composting bin, where they happily chomp down on food waste that has spent a few days in a tank to accelerate the decomposition process. The resulting fertilizer [4] is used to nourish the facility’s flower beds and shrubs.

The airport’s new recycling program cost $1.2 million to implement four months ago, but already 70% of its waste has been diverted from the landfill [5]. And in five years, they expect to start making a profit from their trash sales. Katherine Preston, environmental affairs director for Airports Council International-North America, told NPR that this is the first such composting and recycling program that she knows of.

Via NPR [6]

Images of red wigglers [7] in compost, sorting recyclables [8], Shutterstock


Article printed from Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building: http://inhabitat.com

URL to article: http://inhabitat.com/1-9-million-worms-eat-chomp-down-airport-waste-in-north-carolina/

URLs in this post:

[1] Charlotte Douglas International Airport: http://charmeck.org/city/charlotte/Airport/Pages/default.aspx

[2] organic waste into fertilizer: http://inhabitat.com/tag/composting/

[3] plastic, clothing, aluminum: http://inhabitat.com/recycled-materials/

[4] The resulting fertilizer: http://inhabitat.com/watering-can-designed-for-fertilizing-plants-with-human-urine/

[5] diverted from the landfill: http://inhabitat.com/tag/landfill/

[6] NPR: http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2012/12/18/167529920/one-airports-trash-is-2-million-worms-treasure

[7] red wigglers: http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-40934725/stock-photo-red-worms-in-compost-bait-for-fishing.html?src=csl_recent_image-2

[8] sorting recyclables: http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-108327635/stock-photo-rubbish-recycling-in-your-own-house-closeup.html?src=csl_recent_image-1

Copyright © 2011 Inhabitat Local - New York. All rights reserved.