Wednesday, November 15, 2017

We need a regional composting system

Here’s a startling factoid:

The impact of diverting the entirety of food waste in the United States from landfills is equivalent to removing 7.8 million passenger cars from the nation’s streets, according to the U.S. Composting Council.
The reason we want to compost organic waste is not just to recover the nutrients; when you put this waste in the landfill where it has no oxygen, it generates methane, 25 times more powerful a greenhouse gas than the carbon dioxide generated in the compost piles.

Seattle makes it mandatory and convenient. What about Sedona? Not so much.  If you think we should have a composting facility for yard waste and food waste, along with curbside pick up, tell the City and County. Here’s an excerpt of my presentation to the Sedona City Council about a month ago.
Sustainability is now a household term. Increasingly our visitors and residents are coming from communities that have better sustainable practices than we. Just this weekend I was walking thru the parking lot of one of the timeshares and this woman, holding a bag of food scraps, asked “Don’t they compost here?” If you don’t act, there is a risk that we may disappoint our visitors who are increasingly savvy about sustainability, undermining our reputation as an enlightened community that cares about health and the environment. We don’t want our visitors to feel vaguely guilty that they came.
The opportunity, if we do this right, is to become a destination for people to learn about sustainability, sending home millions of visitors with inspiring examples to take back to their communities.
As a postscript, when I mentioned this to a friend who lives here half the year, she said, “It makes me crazy” that we don’t compost.

Here’s an article for those who may be squeamish about saving your food scraps.

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