We had a field trip to the Pinellas County Solid Waste department in Largo today. We learned all about what the facility does and how they generate energy from people’s garbage.
The facility is huge!
We through the Waste to Energy (WTE) process was neat. They use things like tires to make the fires burn really hot. Recycles that aren’t separated beforehand are burned. That made me sad because people could do a lot more recycling.
We boarded a giant Astro Skate bus and drove around the campus. Grandma Susie was able to go on the trip with us and asked lots of good questions.
The WTE plant.
Heading into the scales to the self unload area.
We drove right up and watched people unloading their trucks and cars.
There is a giant mound of tires! The tired are chipped apart and then used to create a hotter burning fire to burn the wet trash.
They also chip up yard waste and make mulch that you can pick up for free around the county. Because of the process they used after it is chipped it is bug and pest free. It all basically cooks off as they let it sit in the run and rotate the piles.
Heading up the back way to the big dump area.
The trash was piles so incredibly high. This building holds 2-3 days of trash! It was nearly full and they were about to go on bypass, which means they take the trash directly to a landfill. Normally they just put the ash in the landfill.
The claw was huge!
More and more trucks kept lining up to dump their contents.
We enjoyed watching the process from the safety and non-stink of the bus.
What a great field trip. I learned a lot about our trash process and it makes me want to recycle more and use less.