No business is permitted to operate without rules and those that do eventually get caught breaking those very rules. It seems the Peninsula Compost Company believed that they could just slip through the cracks.
It turns out that the compost facility located in Wilmington, Delaware, has been avoiding a lot of rules, unfortunately for them, the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) discovered the company’s malpractice and is fining them for all of their violations.
Although the initial investigation was brought about by complaints of excessive odors generated by the facility, the source of these odors gave heed to even more violations. It turns out that the facility has been storing waste material outside of the approved boundaries, numerous waste-piles exceeded size-limits, they consistently accept waste materials that are prohibited in such a facility, and are answering to countless financial and record-keeping discrepancies.
All of these violations, piled up, total $25,000. A fine issued by the DNREC. In addition to the fine, the Peninsula Compost Company has 35 days to clean up their operations. The current penalty holds the company accountable for their violations while encouraging additional measures to reduce external impacts.
Although there were no issues with the actual compost produced, the violations still represent another major flaw in the composting industry. As we have pointed out numerous times before, composting is not always the best solution.
This facility is the only one of its size in our area accepting organic waste material from Delaware, New Jersey, and New York, specifically New York City. The violations are a direct result of the volume of food waste coming into the facility. Adding more waste will likely add to their problems.
NYC recently announced a residential food waste recycling initiative that will be shipping all of its waste to this location. In order for their plan to be successful, NYC needs this facility out of this legal mess, out from under the microscope of the environmentalists, and ultimately sorted out. The facility needs to start following the rules otherwise they will be single-handedly responsible for the failure of this plan.