DNREC Relaunches ‘Recyclopedia’ to Improve Recycling in State

Instant Recycling Info, Waste Disposal Help at Delawareans’, Visitors’ Fingertips

In recognition of America Recycles Day on Nov. 15, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control today relaunches an improved online resource to assist Delawareans and visitors alike in knowing what is acceptable for recycling in the First State. Recyclopedia, administered by the DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances, helps users determine the best way to manage waste, whether by recycling or proper disposal. Recyclopedia can be an environmental asset for residents and visitors, whether at home, work, school or while on vacation.

The web-based application at de.gov/recyclopedia offers an easy-to-navigate, pictorial guide for more than 375 common items – providing an instant response on how and where these items can be most efficiently recycled or disposed of, and directing app users to the nearest locations for either consumer action. Recyclopedia information can be retrieved by PC, tablet, cell phone, or other devices.

“The updated Recyclopedia search tool continues to leverage the latest technology enabling DNREC to help residents and Delaware visitors reduce the amount of recyclables and other waste sent to our landfills,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “One of our continuing challenges in improving the recycling rate in Delaware is the uncertainty about where, what and how to recycle. The new state-specific Recyclopedia helps us meet that challenge with better guidance for Delawareans on knowing what, how and where to recycle or to properly dispose of waste.”

Using Recyclopedia helps with citizens adhering to Delaware’s Universal Recycling Law on whether items should be placed in a curbside recycling cart, taken to a drop-off location, or put in the trash or dumpster. For example, typing “milk jugs” into the Recyclopedia product slot will get a reply that they are “Acceptable” to be put in the curbside recycling cart – Recyclopedia also informs the user to keep the cap on the jug when recycling it. Meanwhile, a search for “coffee cups” and what should be done with them in Delaware results in “Not Acceptable” for the recycling cart and that these cups should go in the trash.

Delaware’s Recyclopedia tool is dynamic and will be updated based on both user interaction and DNREC staff research. For more information, visit de.gov/recyclopedia.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances ensures Delaware’s wastes are managed to protect human life, health, safety and the environment. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contact: Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov

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Reminder: DNREC to Hold Public Hearing Oct. 26 on Proposed Biogas Facility in Southern Delaware

Public Comment to be Accepted Before, During and After Hearing on Bioenergy Devco’s Expansion Plans for Existing Composting Operation

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control will hold a virtual public hearing Wednesday, Oct. 26 at 6 p.m. on the proposed expansion by Bioenergy Devco (BDC) of its existing composting facility in Seaford, Del. to transform organic waste into renewable energy. The proposed project will require multiple permits from DNREC, spanning several of the Department’s divisions, including Air Quality, Waste and Hazardous Substances, and Water. Detailed information about the project and additional related resources – including English, Spanish and Haitian Creole versions of both the DNREC public notice about the hearing and the presentation made at a DNREC virtual community workshop held Sept. 28 – can be found at de.gov/biodevco.

The public hearing will allow attendees who have pre-registered with DNREC to offer comments on Bioenergy Devco’s permit applications to be entered into the public record. All public comments made directly to DNREC – whether received verbally at the public hearing or in writing before or after the hearing – have the same weight and will be considered equally by the DNREC Secretary in making a decision on whether to grant the permits that BDC would require for proceeding with its expansion plans. It is not necessary to submit comments elsewhere – and only comments made to DNREC and entered into the public record will be considered by the Department as part of the permit decision process. Closed captioning, in languages including English and Spanish, is available as an option for comments from the community. Registration and connection information for the hearing can be found on DNREC’s Bioenergy Devco public hearing webpage.

BDC’s facility is currently permitted by DNREC to accept organic waste from approved poultry industry sources for composting. The proposed facility expansion would give BDC the capacity for receiving and processing up to 250,000 tons per year of permitted organic waste. In addition to the proposed anaerobic digestion system, the expansion plans also include construction of a wastewater pre-treatment system and a biogas upgrading plant. There is also a proposed emergency generator in the expansion plans.

Byproducts from the process would include pipeline-grade renewable natural gas (RNG) and digestate, which would be dewatered and is proposed for use in the adjacent compost facility – or to be marketed in the future as a soil amendment that can be turned into compost (and which would require a distribution and marketing permit that is not part of the current proposed project and permit applications).

Specifically, the DNREC permits BDC has applied for include:

  • A resource recovery facility permit from the DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances to construct an anaerobic digestion system, biogas upgrading plant, and compost facility, designed to process poultry industry wastes into digestate, pipeline-grade renewable natural gas (RNG), and compost. Wastes the facility will accept include poultry litter, hatchery waste, dissolved air flotation (DAF) solid cake and liquid sludge, offal, waste activated sludge, and fats, oils, and greases.
  • Two 1102 Natural Minor air pollution permits from the DNREC Division of Air Quality to construct a natural gas-fired emergency generator with a standby power rating of 1,082 kilowatts (kW) (1,451 horsepower) and four anaerobic digesters with associated biogas upgrade and air pollution control equipment. The engine used in the proposed generator set is certified to comply with, and will be required to adhere to, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations.
  • Two wastewater facility construction permits from the DNREC Division of Water to construct an anaerobic digestion system and a wastewater pre-treatment system as part of the proposed resource recovery facility that processes poultry industry wastes into digestate, pipeline-grade renewable natural gas and compost. The anaerobic digestion system and wastewater pretreatment system will include three 0.208-million-gallon (MG) pretreatment tanks, and four 1.95 MG fermentation tanks, a Membrane Bioreactor System (MBR), a 0.198 MG anoxic tank, a 0.412 MG aerobic reactor, a 0.198 MG ultrafiltration feeding tank and ultrafiltration and reverse osmosis treatment systems. The treated wastewater will be pumped and hauled to the Seaford wastewater treatment and disposal facility. BDC plans for a future construction phase will eliminate the need to transport the wastewater via truck by constructing a sanitary sewer pump station and force main that will connect to a future city of Seaford force main located in front of the BDC biogas site on Seaford Road.

BDC’s permit applications and supporting materials can be found in detail on the DNREC website, de.gov/biodevco.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities, and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Air Quality monitors and regulates all emissions to the air. The DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances ensures Delaware’s wastes are managed to protect human life, health, safety and the environment. The DNREC Division of Water manages and protects Delaware’s water resources. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contact: Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov

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DNREC to Host Community Workshop on Proposed Biogas Facility in Southern Delaware

[versión en español]

Public Invited to Sept. 28 Virtual Event to Discuss Permits for Bioenergy Devco Before Company Can Expand Operations

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control will hold a virtual community workshop on Wednesday, Sept. 28 about a proposal by Bioenergy Devco (BDC) to expand its existing composting facility in Seaford, Del. to transform organic waste into renewable energy. The proposed project will require multiple permits from DNREC, spanning several of the Department’s divisions, including Air Quality, Waste and Hazardous Substances, and Water. Detailed information about the project and community resources are available at de.gov/biodevco.

The Sept. 28 virtual community workshop is scheduled for 6 p.m. The workshop will allow the community to learn more about BDC’s expansion plans and information contained in the permit applications before making official public comments. These plans include the construction of an anaerobic digester, which breaks down organic wastes and converts them into renewable natural gas or “biogas” and an organic soil amendment.

The virtual community workshop will be conducted by DNREC staff. Attendees will be able to ask questions of the Department about the proposed project. Closed captioning, in languages including English and Spanish, is available as an option. Registration and connection information is published on the DNREC events calendar at de.gov/dnrecmeetings.

A virtual public hearing for the project will be held about a month later, scheduled at 6 p.m. on Oct. 26. The public hearing will allow attendees who have pre-registered to offer comments on the applications to be entered into the public record. Closed captioning, in languages including English and Spanish, is available as an option. All public comments, whether received verbally at the public hearing or in writing before or after the hearing, have the same weight and will be considered equally by the Secretary in making a decision on whether to grant the permit. Registration and connection information is published on the DNREC public hearing webpage, de.gov/dnrechearings.

BDC’s facility is currently permitted by DNREC to accept organic waste from approved poultry industry sources for composting. The proposed facility expansion would give BDC the capacity for receiving and processing up to 250,000 tons per year of permitted organic waste. In addition to the proposed anaerobic digestion system, the expansion plans also include construction of a wastewater pre-treatment system and a biogas upgrading plant. There is also a proposed emergency generator.

Byproducts from the process would include pipeline-grade renewable natural gas (RNG) and digestate, which would be dewatered and is proposed for use in the adjacent compost facility – or to be marketed in the future as a soil amendment that can be turned into compost (and which would require a distribution and marketing permit that is not part of the current proposed project and permit applications).

Specifically, information about each of the DNREC permits BDC has applied for include:

A resource recovery facility permit from the DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances to construct an anaerobic digestion system, biogas upgrading plant, and compost facility, designed to process poultry industry wastes into digestate, pipeline-grade renewable natural gas (RNG), and compost. Wastes the facility will accept include poultry litter, hatchery waste, dissolved air flotation (DAF) solid cake and liquid sludge, offal, waste activated sludge, and fats, oils, and greases.

Two 1102 Natural Minor air pollution permits from the DNREC Division of Air Quality to construct a natural gas-fired emergency generator with a standby power rating of 1,082 kilowatts (kW) (1,451 horsepower) and four anaerobic digesters with associated biogas upgrade and air pollution control equipment. The engine used in the proposed generator set is certified to comply with, and will be required to adhere to, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations.

Two wastewater facility construction permits from the DNREC Division of Water to construct an anaerobic digestion system and a wastewater pre-treatment system as part of the proposed resource recovery facility that processes poultry industry wastes into digestate, pipeline-grade renewable natural gas and compost. The anaerobic digestion system and wastewater pretreatment system will include three 0.208-million-gallon (MG) pretreatment tanks, and four 1.95 MG fermentation tanks, a Membrane Bioreactor System (MBR), a 0.198 MG anoxic tank, a 0.412 MG aerobic reactor, a 0.198 MG ultrafiltration feeding tank and ultrafiltration and reverse osmosis treatment systems. The treated wastewater will be pumped and hauled to the Seaford wastewater treatment and disposal facility. BDC plans for a future construction phase will eliminate the need to transport the wastewater via truck by constructing a sanitary sewer pump station and force main that will connect to a future city of Seaford force main located in front of the BDC biogas site on Seaford Road.

BDC’s permit applications and supporting materials can be found in detail on the DNREC website, de.gov/biodevco.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Air Quality monitors and regulates all emissions to the air. The DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances ensures Delaware’s wastes are managed to protect human life, health, safety and the environment. The DNREC Division of Water manages and protects Delaware’s water resources. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov; Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov


Recycled Cardboard Boat Regatta Set for Saturday, Aug. 6 on Nanticoke River

Team competition is always intense in the recycled cardboard boat regatta sponsored by DNREC, the Nanticoke Watershed Alliance, the Town of Blades and other environmental partners/DNREC photo

 

The seventh annual Recycled Cardboard Boat Regatta will cast off Saturday, Aug. 6 at the Nanticoke River Public Marine Park, 26 North Market Street, Blades, after a two year absence. Sign in and registration begin at 11 a.m., with judging of boats’ appearances at noon, and races starting at 12:30 p.m. The rain date is Sunday, Aug. 7.

The Recycled Cardboard Boat Regatta is presented by the DNREC Division of Watershed Stewardship, the DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances, the Nanticoke Watershed Alliance, Abbotts Mill Nature Center, and Town of Blades, as part of the Reclaim Our River (ROR) Program – Nanticoke Series. The event is open to anyone who can build a cardboard boat.

Boats may be any size, shape, or design, but must be made of recycled cardboard. They should be painted with multiple coats of any indoor or exterior latex house paint. Decorations may be removed after judging, and prior to the race start. Participants who pre-register their boats by Saturday, July 30, will receive special early-bird pricing of $20 per boat. After that date, registration will increase to $30. Participants can also register the day of the event.

Participants should plan to paddle their boats from the starting point on the Nanticoke River, approximately 100 yards for adults, and 50 yards for children, to the regatta finish line. First place awards will be given for winners of races in five categories: individual, youth, teens, family, and organizations or businesses. Special awards will be given for “Pride of the Fleet,” “Most Whimsical Boat,” and “Team Spirit.” Also, spectators will be asked to pick a “People’s Choice” award winner, while a special “Titanic Award” will be given for the “Most Dramatic Sinking!”

Participants also are encouraged to challenge others to race in the Recycled Cardboard Boat Regatta for one-on-one bragging rights. After all boat races are completed, skippers of cardboard boats may challenge another skipper to a race. For a challenge race, both challengers pay a $5 fee.

During the event, attendees can learn about the Reclaim Our River (ROR) partnership and how to help protect Delaware’s waterways. The ROR-Nanticoke Series is devoted to bringing events, workshops, and recreational activities to the Nanticoke Watershed. The series offers participants fun opportunities to connect with Delaware’s waterways and provides important information on water quality that can help in protecting aquatic resources.

The ROR partnership also welcomes event sponsors, with proceeds going toward event costs, projects that improve water quality, and water quality education. Sponsorships begin at $50.

Registration, rules and other information about the Cardboard Boat Regatta is available at nanticokeriver.org/rcbr22. A video about the event including past regattas is posted on the @DelawareDNREC YouTube channel.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Watershed Stewardship develops and implements innovative watershed assessment, monitoring and implementation activities. The DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances ensures Delaware’s wastes are managed to protect human life, health, safety and the environment. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Joanna Wilson, joanna.wilson@delaware.gov; Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov


Enhanced Plastic Carryout Bag Ban in Effect July 1, 2022

DNREC reminds shoppers the enhanced plastic carryout bag ban will be in effect July 1. DNREC photo.

 

[versión en español]

Film Bags No Longer to Be Distributed by Retail Vendors in Delaware

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control reminds retail shoppers in the state their options are soon to change for packaging groceries and consumer goods. Starting July 1, retail stores in Delaware – all retail stores except restaurants – will no longer provide plastic bags at checkout. An updated plastic bag ban, passed by the Delaware General Assembly in 2021, expands the 2019 plastic bag ban to include all retail stores (with restaurants again the exception) regardless of size, and bans the distribution or sale of all plastic film carryout bags at checkout.

Under Delaware’s 2019 plastic bag ban, the law allowed 2.25 mil-thick plastic film bags to be considered reusable. Last June, the legislature enhanced the state’s plastic bag ban to include all plastic film carryout bags regardless of thickness. Starting July 1, retailers can choose to offer paper bags, or reusable bags made from cloth or other durable fabric with stitched handles. The law also allows retail stores to charge customers for these bags at checkout.

DNREC encourages the use of the cloth or fabric bags brought by customers to businesses where they shop.
DNREC encourages the use of cloth or fabric bags. DNREC photo.

DNREC encourages the use of the cloth or fabric bags brought by customers to businesses where they shop, while advising that these reusable bags should be washed or cleaned after each use by turning them inside out and wiping them down with a cleaning agent or disinfectant.

The goal of the enhanced bag ban is to reduce roadside, waterway and seaside litter; to save valuable landfill space; to increase recycling efforts; and to help recycling facilities avoid delays when plastic bags get stuck in their machinery.

”Prior to the enactment of this law in 2019, it was estimated that each Delawarean used approximately 434 plastic bags each year, many of which wound up as waste in our landfills,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “By realigning the legislation to further limit the use of film carryout bags, we are reducing waste that all too often ends up along on our roadway, in our waterways and along our shorelines – all detrimental to our environment including harmful effects on our wildlife and marine creatures.”

All retail stores that continue to provide exempt bags are required to maintain an At-Store Recycling program for plastic and film bags, including cereal box liners, newspaper sleeves, and single-use produce or meat and fresh seafood bags. The drop-off locations should be visible and accessible within the store. Bags that are no longer reusable or unwanted should be recycled at these locations. DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances also reminds Delawareans that plastic bags should never be placed in the bins that are part of the state’s curbside recycling program, but should instead be returned to the stores the bags came from for recycling.

Consumers and retailers can find more information about the enhanced plastic bag ban at de.gov/bags.

About DNREC
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities, and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances ensures Delaware’s wastes are managed to protect human life, health, safety and the environment. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media Contacts: Michael Globetti, michael.globetti@delaware.gov; Nikki Lavoie, nikki.lavoie@delaware.gov

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