A CO2 saving equivalent to taking all cars off the roads of the EU could be delivered if cities around the world separated and collected inedible food waste.
That message has come from the World Biogas Association (WBA) in its report Global Food Waste Management: An Implementation Guide for Cities.
The report, written with C40 Cities, a network of major cities working on climate change, said that that treating food waste through anaerobic digestion (AD) gave the best environmental results.
But few cities had separate food waste collections, leaving it to be landfilled or incinerated.
The report said AD technologies were “mature, ready to implement and cost-effective, allow maximum recovery of resources for both green energy generation and soil restoration”.
WBA president David Newman said: “Treating food waste represents an opportunity to cut emissions while resolving other issues around energy, soil quality, waste management and human health in urban areas.
“The technologies to resolve all these, particularly AD, are mature and deployable now, and the WBA can support cities in their transition. What are we waiting for?”