Food waste to biogas? Asheville studies mass composting

By Joel Burgess, Citizen-Times.

ASHEVILLE - Of the trash tossed into the city's garbage cans annually, 12 million pounds are organic materials including everything from vegetable peelings to used pizza boxes.

That's according to a 2015 study contracted by the city and Buncombe County on how to divert organic material from the landfill. The study said a quarter of what was thrown away was organic and could probably be broken down. That could help it avoid taking up increasingly premium space in the county solid waste facility.

Asheville and the county are now entering a second phase of the composting study to see if those items can in fact be broken down and even turned into energy in the form of a something called "biogas."