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Disneyland’s Zero-Waste Efforts Earn EPA Award

DisneyDisneyland Resort has diverted more than 7 million pounds of food scraps from entering landfills since 2013 and is the first theme park in the US to receive zero waste certification at one facility — achievements that helped the theme park win an EPA 2014 Food Recovery Challenge award.

Disneyland also achieved the highest percent increase in food recovery of any theme park in the nation, the agency says.

The EPA’s Food Recovery Challenge partners with organizations and businesses to prevent and reduce wasted food. The participants include groups such as grocers, educational institutions, sports and entertainment venues, restaurants and hotels.

Since 2013, as part of its efforts under the Food Recovery Challenge, the Disneyland Resort:

  • Had more than 1,200 tons of on-site used cooking oil from resort restaurants converted to biodiesel, which fuels the Disneyland Railroad and Mark Twain Riverboat and has reduced the resort’s consumption of petroleum-based diesel by about 150,000 gallons per year.
  • Was recognized by the US Zero Waste Business Council for achieving a 99.8 percent diversion rate at Circle D Corral, the first location in The Walt Disney Company or any theme park to receive a zero-waste certification. Circle D Corral, a working ranch that is home to the animals of the Disneyland Resort, collects animal waste, hay scraps, and wood shavings, as well as coffee grounds from resort restaurants, and laundry lint from hotel clothes dryers, producing 600,000 pounds of compost per year.

In addition, in December 2014, Disneyland Resort began a surplus food donation program. To date, it has donated more than 110,000 pounds of packaged food, valued at $360,000.

In 2012, Americans threw away nearly 35 million tons of food, more than any other type of material being landfilled, according to the EPA. As wasted food decomposes in a landfill, it generates methane, a greenhouse gas 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide.

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