The Environmental Protection Agency granted $152,000 to the Washington, D.C., Department for Public Works for the formation of a food waste program.

“Food Waste Ready” is a two-phase training and certification process for restaurants and other commercial food waste generators. The DC DPW is one of 11 organizations chosen to receive almost $2 million in funding. The program focuses on expanding the use of anaerobic digesters, which employ microorganisms to break down organic material and create biogas.  

“This project has deep connections with many DC DPW departments and is built on local knowledge developed over several years,” EPA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Adam Ortiz said in a press release. “The plan for conducting outreach within the restaurant sector is excellent and the depth of planning for environmental justice is very sound. It incorporates EJ components remarkably well and will have a significant positive impact on the affected communities.”

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EPA said the program will also benefit commercial food waste generators with the approach of 2023 local organic recycling rules. 

“This innovative new program will be a further boost toward achieving Mayor (Muriel) Bowser’s Zero Waste goals, as it will train and certify businesses as ‘Food Waste Ready’ using innovative new tools and strategies,” DPW Interim Director Mike Carter said in a press release.

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