New York State Division of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos introduced $2 million in new grant funding is now obtainable to municipalities statewide to assist set up or increase meals scrap recycling packages and services. The primary $1 million in grants will prioritize eligible tasks that dedicate not less than half of the funding to serving Environmental Justice communities to make sure these communities disproportionately overburdened by environmental air pollution are capable of take part within the initiative’s local weather and waste-reduction advantages.
“Meals scrap recycling infrastructure is important to realize New York’s waste diversion targets and these grants assist guarantee equitable entry to this new funding alternative,” stated Commissioner Seggos. “Composting may help defend our shared surroundings by diverting meals waste to assist scale back our dependence on landfills, defend the planet from dangerous methane emissions, and recycle natural vitamins again into the soil to develop wholesome meals. As well as, profitable packages just like the Meals Donation and Meals Waste Scraps Recycling Legislation assist the State’s efforts below Governor Kathy Hochul’s management to cut back waste and climate-altering emissions whereas getting lots of of hundreds of kilos of high quality meals to New Yorkers in want.”
Commissioner Seggos celebrated the announcement at an occasion on the Radix Ecological Sustainability Middle within the metropolis of Albany with Mayor Kathy Sheehan, recognizing town’s meals scraps drop-off location and compost training program. The town obtained a $225,000 Meals Waste Discount grant from DEC in 2019 and is placing it to work locally. Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan stated, “I wish to thank Governor Hochul and Commissioner Seggos for investing in meals scrap recycling packages and services on a neighborhood degree. Funding waste diversion packages in an equitable method permits for elevated participation in sustainable practices and gives nourishment to these with meals insecurities. The advantages to our surroundings embody decreasing dependence on landfills and combustors and serving to decrease climate-altering emissions whereas producing precious, nutrient-rich compost that improves soil well being and water high quality. New Yorkers are nationwide leaders relating to sustainability, and successfully managing and recycling the waste we generate is in keeping with that precedent. What a beautiful solution to acknowledge Compost Consciousness Week right here in Albany and throughout the State.”
Recycling meals scraps, grass, leaves, yard clippings, and different natural supplies via composting helps to decrease climate-altering emissions from landfills and combustors, whereas producing precious, nutrient-rich compost that improves soil well being and water high quality. Diverting organics from landfills is a part of the Draft Scoping Plan to implement New York’s formidable Local weather Management and Neighborhood Safety Act(leaves DEC web site). The State’s Local weather Motion Council is holding a public listening to tomorrow in Brooklyn to obtain feedback on the draft Scoping Plan.
The meals scraps and compost initiatives focused for funding on this spherical of DEC grants are amongst many efforts New York State is endeavor to advertise each elevated meals donation and meals scraps recycling. Earlier this yr, the State applied the New York State Meals Donation and Meals Scraps Recycling Legislation, which requires companies and establishments that generate an annual common of two tons of wasted meals per week or extra to donate extra edible meals and recycle all remaining meals scraps if they’re inside 25 miles of an organics recycler. Roughly 1,150 companies throughout the state are required to donate, with 320 companies additionally required to recycle their meals scraps. DEC partnered with Feeding New York State, the meals financial institution affiliation of New York State, to supply help to companies to assist arrange or improve meals donation packages. Within the final six months since this profitable partnership bought underway, greater than 440,000 kilos of edible meals was donated to meals banks and offered on to folks in want.
Feeding New York State Government Director Dan Egan stated, “The Meals Donation and Meals Scraps Recycling Legislation is already having a big effect on households in want. We have now seen a considerable enhance in donations from 43 new donors, with extra slated to come back on-line shortly. Our partnership with Commissioner Seggos’ employees at DEC is what makes this potential. DEC funding and experience has enabled us to go to dozens of potential new donors, handle new, top quality meals donations, and divert over 400,000 kilos of completely good meals away from landfills. This meals is feeding folks proper now, and is proof that good public coverage works. Within the subsequent few years our aim is to divert a million kilos monthly of top quality meals away from waste streams and put it to its meant use of feeding folks. We thank Governor Hochul for her management on these points, in addition to the employees at DEC for his or her fantastic partnership in preventing starvation and sustaining the surroundings. Congratulations to Mayor Kathy Sheehan for this nice step ahead for Albany.”