Reunity Resources is a 501c3 non-profit organization with a zero waste mission: it’s our goal to reunite our waste streams with value for our community. We are dedicated to educating about, implementing and promoting zero waste programs. We have been working in the Santa Fe area for 4 years to facilitate recycling and reuse from area restaurants, and we are the only organization of our kind in the nation. We are branching into residential pilot programs to increase Northern New Mexico’s access to recycling services and improve our low landfill diversion rate of only 8%.
Through our BioFuel Collective, we collect used cooking oil from local restaurants, recycle it into ASTM-certified biodiesel and then redistribute clean, renewable fuel to northern New Mexico. The impact of the BioFuel Collective reaches our whole community population: everyone in our community benefits from improved air quality, a water supply that does not get oil contamination, and a secure localized biodiesel fuel source. The BioFuel Collective reduces our community’s waste stream by 500 tons of CO2 annually, reduces our dependence on foreign oil and creates local jobs.
We also educate about and advocate for closed-loop recycling systems and the use of alternative fuels. Executive Director Tejinder Ciano offers ongoing workshops at the Santa Fe Community College BioFuels Center for Excellence and also led a series of workshops with the NM Department of Workforce Development aimed at building applicable job skills in this market. Through Reunity Resources’ advocacy, the City of Santa Fe began using 5% biodiesel in all its diesel fleet vehicles in May 2013.
Our fast-growing new program is a compost pilot in partnership with the City of Santa Fe. After 18 months of education and advocacy with City government, local restaurants, and public schools, in April 2014 we launched a commercial food scraps collection program in Santa Fe. Since then, we have diverted over 300,000 pounds of food from our landfill. Nationwide, Reunity Resources’ food waste pilot program is second only to New York City’s in size and diversion volume.
Fall 2014 holds several exciting projects for Reunity Resources. We are implementing food waste separation for compost in our public school district, expanding our waste oil and biodiesel distribution services, partnering with Earth Care, and branching into mixed recyclable services, commercially and residentially.