Stony Mountain Institution is the oldest running federal prison in Canada for adult males. It is a federal multi-security complex that houses maximum, medium, and minimum risk inmates. The facility is in a remote, mountain location and has expanded multiple times since its grand opening on August 15, 1877.
In November 2010, Stony Mountain Institution underwent a massive expansion to include its current maximum security facility. “In the previous system, a violent criminal sentenced to nine years in prison could potentially be on our streets in as little as three years if he or she spent two years awaiting trial,” said Federal Minister of Public Safety Vic Toews. “This possibility is not acceptable to Canadians. We are acting to ensure that the criminals pay their debt – their full debt – to society.”
Stony Mountain Institution is run by the Correctional Service of Canada. CSC is the third largest GHG emitter amongst all federal departments. In 2018, CSC inaugurated a Sustainable Development Strategy with a commitment to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
The current maximum occupancy of the federal prison is 797. There are seven operational units within the facility, offering various levels of supervision. The Correctional Service of Canada strove to find a food waste solution that was sustainable, economical, and most importantly, secure. In 2018, the CSC piloted an LFC-50 biodigester in one of their facilities. In 2021, they installed an LFC-200 biodigester with the LFC Security Package at Stony Mountain Institution and since then, has begun rolling out numerous biodigester initiatives across multiple facilities.
Waste generated in a correctional facility
Correctional facilities average between 230 g (0.5 lb) per inmate per day to as much as 0.5 kg (1.2 lb) per inmate per day, This means that a facility housing 800 inmates can easily generate as much as half a ton of food waste per day.
Most correctional facilities are held in remote locations to maintain safety and security. Transporting that much food waste on a daily basis is expensive, inefficient, and can lead to security risks. Waste management fees are often calculated by the weight of the waste and distance of transportation. The carbon footprint of outsourcing waste management dramatically increases when factoring in the environmental impact of the fuel used transportation vehicles.
Biodigester solution for federal buildings
With 48 federal prisons across Canada, the Correctional Service of Canada sought to find a sustainable solution that they could scale across multiple facilities. Outsourcing waste management opened the facilities to numerous security concerns. Composting was not an option as it required high maintenance and manpower. It was not suitable for most facilities which were built on rocky landscape. COVID-19 lockdown measures also prevented inmate crews from gardening, recycling and other typical waste reduction strategies that involve moving waste or waste byproducts off-site.
The CSC piloted an LFC-50 biodigester at one of their smaller facilities. The biodigester was able to digest food waste without issue and discharge it into the sewage system, removing outsourced waste management services from the middleman. The pilot was deemed successful and the CSC began rolling out the biodigester across their facilities.
LFC Security Package
In 2021, Power Knot developed the LFC Security Package: an additional set of features that can be ordered for the range of LFC biodigesters. This option prevents unauthorized personnel from configuring, using, or tampering with the LFC biodigester. The security package features includes locks, shatterproof screens, protected hinged panels, security screws, and rounded corners.
The door, LED screen, and hose are all locked with a special key to ensure safety. All exposed screws on the biodigester are replaced with security head torx screws that cannot be removed without special tools. The corners and edges on the machine have been rounded so that there are no sharp edges.
These additional features ensure that the biodigester could be used only by designated personnel with maximum safety. In 2021, Power Knot shipped out the first LFC-500 biodigester fitted with the LFC Security Package. Since then, availability of the LFC Security Package has been expanded to all smaller LFC biodigesters, the first of which was shipped out in early 2022.
About Stony Mountain Institution
Stony Mountain Institution is the oldest running federal prison in Canada for adult males. It is a federal multi-security complex that houses maximum, medium, and minimum inmates. The facility is held in a remote, mountain location and has expanded multiple times since its grand opening on August 15, 1877.
Industry: Correctional facility