Canadian City Moves Toward First Closed-Loop Organics Waste Management System

The Canadian city of Surrey has chosen Iris Solutions to build what the city claims will be the first closed-loop, fully-integrated organics waste management system in North America.

The Surrey Biofuels Processing Facility will process 115,000 tons of residual kitchen and garden waste from Surrey each year. The process will create a renewable natural gas which can then be used to power the city’s natural gas waste collection trucks. The facility will also produce a compost product that will be suitable for landscaping and agricultural applications.

When completed, the facility will be the largest of its kind in Canada with a capacity to process 100 percent of the city’s organic waste, along with commercial organic waste, helping Metro Vancouver achieve its regional 70 percent waste diversion target.

Iris Solutions, led by Orgaworld Canada, was one of three businesses shortlisted for the contract, which originally comprised eleven different bidding companies. The final contracts are expected to be signed early this year, with design-build activities getting underway shortly thereafter. The facility is expected to become fully operational by late 2016.

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Late last year, the Closed Loop Fund announced it plans to invest $100 million over the next five years to support the development of recycling infrastructure and services in cities across the country. Municipalities acround the country can apply for zero-interest loans to build recycling infrastructure for their communities. The zero-interest loans are repaid from either landfill-diversion savings or revenue generated from the sale of recyclable material. Companies that service municipalities may also apply, and interest rates will be below market rates.

Also last year, Arizona State University (ASU) and the Dutch municipality of Haarlemmermeer, along with private partners in the Haarlemmermeer region, came together to create the world’s first regional plan based on the principles of a circular economy. The project, “Haarlemmermeer Beyond Sustainability,” focuses on creating a regional strategy that will close resource loops in the most efficient, economical and sustainable manner possible. The project includes designing the circular economy strategy and identifying closed-loop energy, water, matter and other resource cycles that are pragmatic, market-based and adaptable for the region.

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