Co-composting of beef cattle feedlot manure with construction and demolition waste.

Hao, X., Hill, B.R., Caffyn, P.R., Travis, G.R., Olson, A.F., Larney, F.J., McAllister, T.A., and Alexander, T.W. (2014). "Co-composting of beef cattle feedlot manure with construction and demolition waste.", Journal of Environmental Quality, 43(5), pp. 1799-1808. doi : 10.2134/jeq2014.02.0087  Access to full text


With increased availability of dried distillers’ grains with solubles (DDGS) as cattle feed and the need to recycle organic wastes, this research investigated the feasibility of co-composting DDGS cattle feedlot manure with construction and demolition (C&D) waste. Manure was collected from cattle fed a typical western Canadian finishing diet (CK) of 860 g rolled barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) grain, 100 g barley silage, and 40 g vitamin and mineral supplement kg1 dry matter (DM) and from cattle fed the same diet but (DG manure) with 300 g kg1 DM barley grain being replaced by DDGS. The CK and DG manures were co-composted with and without C&D waste in 13 m3 bins. Compost materials were turned on Days 14, 37, and 64, and terminated on Day 99. Adding C&D waste led to higher compost temperatures (0.4 to 16.3°C, average 7.2°C) than manure alone. Final composts had similar total C, total N, C/N ratios, and water-extractable K, Mg, and NO3 content across all treatments. However, adding C&D waste increased δ13C, δ15N, water-extractable SO42, and Ca+ contents and decreased pH, total P (TP), water-extractable C, N, and P and most volatile fatty acids (VFA). The higher C&D compost temperatures should reduce pathogens while reduced VFA content should reduce odors. When using the final compost product, the increased SO42 and reduced TP and available N and P content in C&D waste compost should be taken into consideration. Increased S content in C&D compost may be beneficial for some crops grown on S-deficient soils.

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