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EBC Solid Waste/Renewable Energy/Water Resources Program: Anaerobic Digestion of Food Waste at WWTPs – Comparing Source Separation and “Down the Pipe” Approaches

As Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Vermont each move forward with plans to ban food scraps from landfills, increased attention has been focused on whether and how to leverage the existing waste water treatment infrastructure to handle increased volumes of these discarded organics. While food scraps can significantly boost biogas yields at traditional anaerobic digesters attached to treatment plants, sewage system and plant operators need to consider a variety of factors in determining whether and how to accept additional food scraps. Two main models have emerged: (a) grind the food scraps and send it through the sewer system; or (b) separate the food scraps from other waste and recyclables, then collect and haul the material directly to the anaerobic digester for processing. This EBC program will explore these two approaches and highlight the technical and economic issues to be considered by plant operators, policy makers, and market participants.

Continuing Education Certificates are awarded by the EBC for this program (2 training contact hours). Please select this option during registration if you wish to receive a certificate.

Program Chair:
Wayne Davis
Vice President, Harvest Power


  • Thomas Mackie, Partner, Mackie Shea O’Brien, P.C.
  • Wayne Davis, Vice President, Harvest Power
  • Dr. David L. Parry, Ph.D., P.E., BCEE, Senior Vice President, CDM Smith
  • Jonathan Keaney, P.E., Brown and Caldwell
  • Dave Duest, Manager, Deer Island Process Control, Massachusetts Water Resources Authority

Final Agenda