Texas Disposal Systems Takes a ‘Repurposeful’ Approach to Managing Waste
If you’ve never visited a landfill, you don’t know what you’re missing. But then again, Texas Disposal Systems (TDS) isn’t just a landfill -- it’s a 2,300-acre site devoted to sustainability and environmental stewardship. The company’s commitment to diversion is evidenced by their fully integrated facility, which incorporates solid waste disposal, compost production and recycling operations. USGBC Texas members recently had the privilege of touring Texas Disposal Systems in Austin and got an up-close look at the company’s state-of-the-art recycling facilities and innovative approaches to reusing materials and protecting the Central Texas environment.
During the two-hour tour, the group learned about TDS’s extensive recycling programs, which cover a wide range of materials, from construction and demolition waste to ferrous and non-ferrous metals, rigid plastics, and even packaging and construction waste from the nearby Tesla EV factory. TDS receives 100% of Austin’s residential waste and approximately 45% of residential recyclables, as well as handling approximately one-third of San Antonio’s residential waste, and handles services for other towns in Central Texas, including San Marcos, Kyle, Buda and Georgetown. Their familiar green recycling trucks with exotic animal imagery also serve the West Texas communities of San Angelo and Alpine.
TDS makes every effort to divert recyclable or reusable resources from landfills and actively seeks out advanced technologies to handle complex waste streams effectively. The company has even set aside part of their property, an eco-industrial park, for companies who want to partner with them to create after-market products from recycled materials.
Turning Construction Waste into New Green-Building Products
One of the most exciting products TDS is developing is a concrete aggregate composed of glass, sand and other materials recovered from the construction waste stream.
For those in the construction and green-building industry, TDS is a one-stop shop, offering services such as roll-off dumpsters for bulk waste pick-up needs at job sites, portable restrooms, concrete and demolition recycling, source separation of materials, landscaping solutions and now, repurposed building materials.
TDS uses a “closed-loop” process to divert green waste, brush, tree trimmings, and fruit and vegetable matter from taking up space in our landfills while also creating premium-quality composts, soils and mulches available through its affiliate, Garden-Ville.
“We joyfully embrace our role as stewards of the environment,” said Adam Gregory, who led our tour. “Only through operating practices that are safe, measurable, economical and environmentally sound can we bring long-term benefits to our employees, customers and the communities we serve.” Adam’s enthusiasm was contagious. His father, Bob Gregory, founded TDS with a single truck back in 1977, and Adam said he began “working” for TDS at the tender age of 6, when he would help his dad pick up trash on the Texas roads.
What truly stood out on our tour was TDS’ total dedication to restoration. TDS employs sustainable land management techniques, including habitat restoration initiatives. The company actively manages a buffer zone around the landfill that operates as an exotic wildlife preserve. Their innovative landfill management techniques are a model for others to emulate, and the team’s expertise is often sought out by waste-management organizations across the country.
TDS sets a high bar for environmental sustainability, and USGBC TX commends them for their unwavering commitment to a greener future.
To learn more about Texas Disposal Systems and their work to keep Texas green, visit: www.texasdisposal.com
To sign up for one of USGBC Texas’ upcoming green tours, happy hours or other events, visit our Events page.