Kiawah’s Waste Composting and Sustainability Efforts

Although the resort has been recycling since 1996, efforts to reduce waste and increase sustainability efforts have been taking great strides within the past four years. Part of this success is a result of learning from and collaborating with other sustainable-minded entities.

In the spring of 2009 food waste composting began during the preparation phase in all restaurants. This organic material, which averaged a few hundred pounds per week, was then mixed with landscaping debris and placed in a row on the ground to break down naturally. The finished product was then spread out near a strand of sapling fruit trees to assist with soil improvement.

Flash-forward to June 2011, after a pilot program in the spring of 2011, The Sanctuary began to collect this organic material pre and post-dinner food waste. This allowed all organics, save for raw animal proteins, to be collected and transported off the island to the Charleston County Landfill where the food waste is mixed with landscape debris.

Today, The Sanctuary has composted around 25 tons of food waste instead of adding it to the landfill waste stream. We also recycle shipping pallets, glass, plastic #1-7, metal cans, paper, cardboard, batteries, fluorescent bulbs, electronic ballasts, carpet, fryer oil and electronic waste.

The hotel has reduced its per guest waste from 12.7 pounds in 2007 to 7.7 pounds in 2011. So at the end of your next family dinner, instead of scraping the leftovers off your plate think about how you can compost food as well!

Visit for updated resort-wide sustainability efforts!