Now that the Super Bowl is history, what happens to all that trash that fans left behind?
“Super Bowl, just the game itself, we estimate about forty tons could come from the game,” says Mike Fernandez, director for Miami-Dade’s Department of Solid Waste Management.
If you add up the trash from all the events surrounding the big game, the tons start to number in the hundreds.
Fernandez says “the magic happens,” on the “tipping floor” in Doral, where trucks dump pounds of garbage that get sorted around the clock, every day.
“Every year, we produce about approximately 150-thousand tons of ash, compared to a million tons that comes into this plant, that’s the end result.”
It’s a figure that makes Fernandez proud. He’s also proud of something else: turning the majority of trash into fuel.
“We actually export enough electricity to probably power forty thousand homes,” Fernandez says.
According to him, the county sells the fuel to places like the City of Homestead.
The rest of the garbage gets incinerated into ash.
As long as the plant is fed, waste keeps being reduced. 150,000 tons of ash is not bad, Fernandez notes.
“Compared to over a million tons of waste that could have gone just straight into a landfill, this is a great thing.”