Matthew Cotton

Matthew Cotton

Matthew Cotton

Speaker, Workshop Instructor | Integrated Waste Management Consulting, LLC

Richmond, CA |

Matthew Cotton has worked in the composting industry since 1986. He has served as a consultant, educator, researcher, and advocate for new and expanded organics recycling and composting programs in California and beyond. Mr. Cotton has completed hundreds of significant organics projects, including permitting and assisting in the development of some of the major composting facilities in California. He has become a trusted resource for some of the largest composters in California, as well as executing projects for CalRecycle, the state’s Department of Resources, Recycling and Recovery. His day to day work includes helping composters plan, site, permit, and troubleshoot large-scale composting facilities.

Session Code: A3

Track: Current Research (hosted by CREF)

Session Name: PFAS and Air Emissions

Session Time: 4:15 to 5:45 PM

Presentation Title: Connecting VOC Emissions to Compost Process Parameters

Presentation Description: This paper presents insights related to HDR’s study commissioned by CalRecycle to explore VOC emissions from composting operations.

California’s Senate Bill 1383 requires 75% of organic material be diverted from landfills to reduce climate related impacts associated with landfill operations. As California composters prepare to manage increased amounts of organics containing elevated levels of food waste, CalRecycle seeks to provide guidance in terms of the compost process and the Volatile Organic Compounds that it produces. This paper will provide an overview of the Composting Volatile Organic Compounds Emissions Guide the HDR Team prepared for CalRecycle.

The key objectives of this research study were:

  1. Clarify the importance of oxygen availability (or lack thereof) on biological decomposition (and decomposition oxidation pathway), odor generation, and VOC production.
  2. Elucidate other key compost process parameters which can be taken into consideration and affect the design, operation, and optimization of the compost process,
  3. Evaluate an alternative method of measuring VOC emissions which is simpler to use and more cost-effective than the flux chamber method.

This presentation will discuss the methods used, the results gathered and provide an analysis of the conclusions, focusing on BMPs composters can use to reduce VOCs during composting.

Workshop Time: Tuesday, January 24, 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Workshop Title: Foundations of Composting

Workshop Description: This intensive and interactive one-day training will cover the basic concepts, practices and “how to’s” of commercial compost production. The course will provide a broad foundation for novice compost operators, managers and regulators and will refresh veteran composters on the underlying scientific principles. Subjects will include: Basic principles of composting, process insights, facility design and management, feedstock properties, qualities of compost, odor control, major processing methods, and an overview of markets for compost.