Every week, the average New Yorker throws out nearly 24 pounds of waste at home and work. That adds up to more than six million tons of residential and commercial waste generated annually. In response to the challenge of sustainably managing these waste flows, New York City has committed to the goal of Zero Waste by 2030.
The path to reaching this goal will be multi layered, beginning with the City’s existing curbside collection programs for recycling and organic waste. For the remaining waste that is not divertible—including things like diapers, hygiene products and some plastics—Covanta steps in.
In 2019, we commenced operations at the East 91st Street Marine Transfer Station, which is the second in a pair of marine transfer stations under a 20-year waste transport and disposal agreement between Covanta and the Department of Sanitation of New York City.
At full capacity, Covanta will process approximately 33 percent of NYC’s residential waste, a crucial step toward meeting the City’s Zero Waste by 2030 target.
The site, which operates 24 hours a day, six days a week, is permitted to receive up to 1,860 tons of municipal solid waste each working day. It’s outfitted with a 1,900-square-foot entrance and exit ramp that can support up to 17 trucks at a time. Air monitoring is done twice a year and exterminators come monthly.
To help the facility operate as efficiently as possible, it also features:
- Detection systems for radiation, odors and leaks;
- Natural and LED lighting;
- A heating, ventilation and air conditioning system that filters, cleans and recirculates facility air; and
- A “smartboard” that includes both equipment and employee information.