Composting is an integral part of the waste management business of AES and Bord na Mona. Bord na Mona's composting plant in Kilberry is licensed to treat 96,000 tonnes of green waste and its target is to compost 150,000 tonnes by 2013. This is being achieved by the Horticulture R&D team and growing trials conducted with their university partner, UCD.
A win/win situation
Through this joint scientific research, indigenous Irish organic waste streams are converted into a high quality-growing medium that is bagged and sold to the customer. This means the use of peat is reduced, waste is diverted from landfill and the retail customer has an excellent product.
Other indigenous waste streams are being studied for their potential as peat diluents and thus diversion from landfill:
- The contribution of green compost in media to micronutrient provision for plants is being actively investigated;
- Lime reductions in green compost-containing media are envisaged; and
- The potential to harness the water absorption/wetting characteristics of green compost is being studied.
New composting facility
Planning has recently been granted for the building of a 25,000 tonne composting facility in Bord na Mona’s waste treatment facility in Drehid, Co. Kildare. This facility will compost mixed organic waste and will be licensed to accept animal by-products to produce stabilised compost.