Alaska Waste Commercial Composting Program

Over the years, Alaska Waste has led the way for innovative and eco-friendly waste management solutions. Through the introduction of residential and commercial recycling services across the state, the construction of a biodiesel processing facility, and most recently the addition of Alaska’s only state of the art in-vessel composter, Alaska Waste has helped prevent millions of pounds of refuse from entering the state’s landfills and solid waste stream each year.

The Alaska Waste Commercial Composting Program was initiated in 2009. Composting is a method of speeding up the natural decomposition process of organic waste. During the composting process, colonies of microorganisms help break down organic matter leaving behind a nutrient rich, reusable product. In order for the natural breakdown process to take place, the waste and composting matter need to maintain an optimal temperature and environment, and due to the natural climate of the region, this has made year-round composting a challenge in Alaska.

In order to establish a large scale composting program that could be utilized year-round, Alaska Waste invested in a cutting edge in-vessel composting machine that could be housed within their Anchorage headquarters. The composting machine measures 10 feet in diameter and 32 feet in length with the ability to process over 16 cubic yards of material daily. By keeping the composting machine inside, Alaska Waste has the ability to process compost all year long greatly reducing the amount of organic waste that ends up in landfills.

Primarily comprised of vegetable and fruit waste from local grocery stores and horse manure from Anchorage residents, Alaska Waste processes nearly 10 tons of organic waste a week. The composter rotates slowly at the rate of one revolution every six minutes in order to move oxygen through the compost, speeding up the decomposition process.  The composter is set at a 1 degree incline so that materials will very slowly tumble down towards the output.  By the time material has travelled from one end of the composter to the other over the course of four to six days, it has been completely converted from waste to a high quality soil amendment material. 

At Alaska Waste, we continually strive to reduce the amount of waste headed to our landfills. In addition to our composting program, we work with local restaurants and businesses to collect and convert used cooking oil into biodiesel, and we have worked to expand our residential and commercial recycling services across the region. We will continue to work hard for our state, our communities, and our customers to help conserve resources & reduce landfill waste in Alaska!