By John Pizzimenti
Manager, Environmental Services
The greatest joy and reward resulting from my job responsibilities is re-purposing construction and demolition debris. These materials were formerly land-filled. Now, our company recovers material from these waste streams and provides a wide variety of products. Approximately 153,000 tons of material was recovered in 2014 & 2015.
Our recycled landscaping products are produced at our state permitted facility, Shoham Road Transfer LLC. There, the clean, untreated wood is separated and processed into the various products. The wood is ground to a particular size and colored with red, brown and black colorant. The colored recycled wood product is sold to mulch distributors. The smaller particles are screened and kept under cover to remain dry. This is then used for animal bedding.
Recycled wood is also used to produce heat and energy. Some of the clean, ground wood chip is sent to wood pellet manufacturers. It is then bagged and sent to retail distributors. Often, the mixed recycled wood is used as a fuel for renewable energy. These facilities generate electricity for distribution on the electric grid.
Asphalt, brick and concrete and residential asphalt roof shingles are also repurposed. These materials are processed at our state permitted Babylon Recycling Center. The asphalt and concrete is crushed to make reprocessed concrete. The product is sized to meet CT DOT specifications. It is used as a base under roads, parking lots and driveways. Red brick is also crushed and used as decorative landscape material. Red brick is crushed to make brick chips for landscaping. Residential asphalt roof shingles are segregated and tested for asbestos according to DEEP regulations. There has never been a positive result for asbestos in any of our shingles. The shingles are ground, screened and used in the production of new asphalt. The ground shingles can also be used in certain asphalt patch applications.
As you can see, our companies are proactive in saving the environment by re-purposing these discarded materials. Not only does it save on landfill space, it saves energy and raw materials. That’s why our colors are red, white, blue and green.