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Current Member Spotlight

Earth Bio Technologies and Harvard University

We are pleased to welcome two new Supporting Advisory Members to Northeast Recycling Council: Earth Bio Technologies and Harvard University

Earth Bio Technologies

In 2021, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reported that annual food loss and waste in the United States equaled the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of 42 coal-fired power plants. Furthermore, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), “when food ends up in landfills, it generates methane, an even more potent greenhouse gas.”

“The connection between food loss and waste and climate change is increasingly recognized as important,” USDA observed.

New NERC Advisory Member Earth Bio Technologies states, “Our mission is to enhance environmental initiatives, improve operations through prevention, and return bottom-line savings to our clients who drive the food service industry.” The company offers several proprietary formulas to biologically break down organic wastes in drain systems, grease traps & lift stations. The company also manufactures drain system safeguard solutions to prevent solids from causing blockages.

Noting that “roughly 35% of all food produced goes uneaten with most ending up in landfill as one of the largest waste streams by weight,” Earth Bio Tech developed a product it named Compolizer, which it describes as “as a remediation agent by accelerating the decomposition of organic material.”  A recent development in the company’s extensive line of products is the ScrapDrain – Sink Solids Separator.

ScrapDrain “captures food scrap before it enters the drain line with greater capacity & finer collection,” the company states. “It keeps drains and septic systems clear from solids while helping to promote landfill diversion using compost options.”

A local new source in Earth Bio Tech’s hometown of Glendale PA covered the product launch in an article entitled Glenside’s EarthBio Technologies launches ScrapDrain.

The article reports:

“There is a long-standing belief that garbage disposals are eco-friendly. As Douglas Horner, managing director of EarthBio points out, ‘The operating facts suggest otherwise since garbage disposals use lots of electricity, loads of extra water, and produce a slurry of solids.’ This slurry, according to Horner, travels into our waterways to our wastewater treatment plants where the solids are screened out and trucked off to landfill.”

“A cycle of futility”, Horner says.

ScrapDrain delivers 8x more capacity than the average sink strainer, the company reports. For residential applications, the food waste rinses into ScrapDrain where it is collected and strained. In a single motion, the stainless collection basket allows for simple transfer to the collection bin. For commercial applications, ScrapDrain prevents food solids from clogging the drain line and building up in the grease trap. As a result, the grease trap works more efficiently, and the drain lines stays clear and flowing.

Building upon its long history of addressing food waste and practical solutions to it, NERC welcomes Earth Bio Tech to its growing roster of Advisory Members. We look forward to cooperating with Earth Bio Tech in finding solutions to the issue of food waste.

Harvard University

As one of the premier centers of higher education in the world, Harvard University hardly needs an introduction to readers of NERC’s Advisory Member Spotlight series. But as a new NERC Advisory Member, Harvard is afforded the opportunity to share with our readers the many sustainability successes over the past several years.

A visit to the University’s current home page underscores its unrelenting focus on sustainability. Instead of the usual bromides on academic achievements and successes in the arts and sports, Harvard chooses to highlight the issue of sustainable transportation. “Harvard experts are exploring planes, trains, and automobiles in their quest to innovate green travel, improve public transportation, and discover the future of getting from place to place,” the University reports.

Readers seeking a deeper dive into Harvard’s sustainability efforts are encouraged to visit its Office for Sustainability. In May of this year, the University published its Sustainability Action Plan. According to coverage in the Harvard Gazette, “this strategic roadmap is built around three pillars of climate, equity, and health, and offers a unifying and holistic vision for creating a more sustainable institution, and in turn a more sustainable world.”

“The major objective of Harvard’s plan remains Goal Zero,” the article continues. “This science-based goal, set in 2018, involves eliminating the use of fossil fuels in Harvard’s district energy supply, buildings, purchased electricity, and vehicle fleet on campus by 2050.”

“Even as we aim to achieve our big picture 2050 Goal Zero, our continued path to fossil-fuel-free and sustainable development includes a focus on holistic sustainability that addresses climate and the environment, equity, and well-being,” said Bill Clark, Harvey Brooks Research Professor of International Science, Public Policy, and Human Development at Harvard Kennedy School, and co-chair of the Sustainability Plan Subcommittee. “Our core sustainability vision is to enhance inclusive well-being in a way that does not jeopardize the ability of others elsewhere or in the future to advance their own well-being.”

Recent solutions for a zero-waste community at Harvard include:

  • In 2021, Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) partnered with Harvard Recycling and Waste Management to launch a plastic bag and film recycling program that has collected more than 2,000 pounds of plastic from the Harvard waste stream.  
  • The plastic bag pilot project has also been explored by Harvard Business School (HBS), Harvard University Information Technology, Harvard Art Museums, and Harvard University Mail Services.

In Where Does our Waste Go?, the University’s Recycling & Waste Services details the paths of all items in the community’s waste stream, from composting and single stream recycling to textiles and electronic waste.

NERC is honored to welcome Harvard University to its growing roster of Supporting Advisory Members. We look forward to engaging with the University in its on-campus sustainability, as well as the applicability of its solutions to the wider community.