Together, the food and beverage tenants at PDX divert approximately 12 tons of organic material — food scraps, napkins, and food-soiled paper — from the landfill each month. More than 20 businesses from PDX and the surrounding areas participate, including flight kitchens and hotels. The food waste goes to Cedar Grove Composting to become a nutrient-rich, beneficial soil additive. Less organic matter in our landfills helps to reduce greenhouse gases, while compost in regional gardens helps to grow healthy plants. Additionally, PDX partners are transitioning to biodegradable food packaging, and cooking grease from restaurants is recycled for biodiesel, then purchased back by us for use in vehicles.
The Association of Oregon Recyclers has presented its “Government Recycler of the Year” award to the Port of Portland. The honor recognized our efforts to reduce waste streams and increase recycling and composting rates. At Portland International Airport, our new drain stations at security checkpoints allow travelers to dispose of liquids so they can more easily recycle bottles and cans before heading through security lines. In the airport food courts, we’ve expanded food waste recycling to the general public, and food waste volumes have increased steadily since the program was first initiated in 2003.
The award from the Association of Oregon Recyclers also cited Portwide initiatives, including those by our marine and industrial development division, which instituted zero waste events and all-plastics recycling, and increased efforts to send materials to be reused, salvaged or recycled before ever going to a landfill.
We were nominated for this award by Portland State University’s community environmental services program, which participates with us in working with our tenants, partners and customers to use less, and reuse and recycle more.
Stan Jones, Aviation Environmental Compliance Manager, 503.415.6679
Association of Oregon Recyclers