Power the American nation with waste food! Answered
The situation is probably worse than the study suggests, since the only data available on wasted food was from 1995, when 27% of all food was wasted. Since then, food prices have fallen, and waste has probably increased.
Michael Webber and Amanda Cuellar at the Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy at the University of Texas at Austin calculate that this is the equivalent of about 2150 trillion kilojoules lost each year.
That's more than could be gained from many popular strategies to improve energy efficiency. It is also more than projections for how much energy the US could produce by making ethanol biofuel from grains.
Obviously, Americans (and every other similarly-wasteful society - we're just as guilty in the UK) should be doing their level best to reduce their wasted food, but it also strikes me; there is gold in them thar bins.
Rather than persuade hundreds of millions of lazy "Westerners" to change their ways, why not exploit them? Why not make money off them (or at least, save your own energy costs)?
We already have a bus driving around for free, and a car running on garbage. Can you come up with a house-hold scale scheme?
Could you cut your energy bills to zero, just by collecting other people's garbage for them?
Could you set yourself up as a supplier of motor fuels (gasoline or diesel replacements? methane?)
Come on, iblers, do your thing!
New Scientist article
The study itself.
(I have attached a PDF of the study, if you're interested.