In recent times, there has been talk about what the composting process means to help the environment and reduce the amount of garbage that ends up in landfills or landfills. People are used to recycling as a way to protect nature, but composting plays a primary role in the midst of all these behaviors. But what does it mean, how do I do it, why does it help the environment and how it works in our area.
What is composting?
Composting, which can be done domestically, is a natural transformation process of organic waste, that is, those that we usually throw away, such as food husks, to obtain compost, which is humus or natural compost for provide nutrients to the soil.
Apart from being a process that helps reduce the amount of garbage that ends up in landfills, it is also a way to reduce the use of chemical fertilizers and greenhouse gases produced by industrial composting.
Why should you compost and how does it help the environment?
- Reduce the use of fertilizers and water.
- Reduce the volume of trash going to landfills or landfills.
- It benefits the land and plants as it is a natural fertilizer that does not have chemicals.
- Promotes soil fertility.
- Stimulates healthy root development.
- Helps in erosion control.
- Reduce chemical inputs.
- Reduce the volume of garbage.
- It helps with the cycle of life by feeding the earth and creating vegetables that are then food for animals.
- Among other benefits.
What products can I compost?
- Remains of vegetable food and fruits.
- Grass clippings.
- Sawdust and wood ash.
- Chopped branches and twigs.
- Ground coffee and you can also use the filters.
- Organic food scraps in general.
- Spoiled or expired food.
- Nut shells.
- Among others.
What should I not compost?
- Leftover meat.
- Diseased or insect infested plants.
- Weed with seeds.
- Cat and dog feces.
- Food with grease or soap residues.
- Among others.
How do I do it?
You can compost your yard by storing yard clippings (leaves, grass clippings, and yard debris) and certain food and kitchen scraps by preparing them properly and placing them in a compost pile.
For many people who live in the city they sell containers that are suitable for composting inside small places like an apartment. What is most important is that it is in a comfortable place to use. Then decide how you want to compost. There are many different ways to prepare a compost pile.
You can build your own compost bin – these will generally have a neat appearance, help keep pests out, and retain heat and moisture. You can assemble wood and wire stakes or wire netting into a simple round enclosure, build a wooden container from reclaimed wood or old pallets, create a three-sided enclosure by placing cinder blocks on top of each other, leaving the front open, or even drilling holes in the bottom and sides of a trash can. You can also buy a bin of compost – people can buy it from different places online, like Amazon, or at a garden center, or you can check with local programs.
Then prepare the compost materials and build a pile.
After a few weeks start to see if the compost is ready.
Here you will find information on how to create a container for indoor places. In addition, the United States Environmental Protection Agency also offers a page that explains the process and the benefits of the process on this website.
On the other hand Jessica Rivas, executive director of Más Compost, explains what this process is about in a simple way in the following PodCast. Click here.
What services does the tri-state area offer for people who do or want to compost?
The New York Department of Environmental Conservation has a composting resource page that explains what it’s all about and also local food scrap programs and services. The page offers a map where they can find places to take the compost when it’s done and other resources. Click here for information.
Curbside compost pick-up program:
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on April 22, Environment Day, that the Big Apple resumed its curbside compost collection service program, which had been suspended due to budget impact. of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This program began in 2013 and as of August 2021 the New York City Department of Sanitation seeks that all New Yorkers who are interested in compost collection, or natural compost, report through an online form or by calling 3-1-1. Residents will now have to opt-in for service to be provided where demand is available beginning in October 2021. The service will grow as demand increases.
Until service begins, residents are asked to either use a food scrap spot or dispose of food scraps and yard waste with their trash. Residents with questions about their collection times should contact 3-1-1.
Those interested in receiving the service from October the Department of Sanitation will launch an online form in August. More information here.
Other resources in the Big Apple:
Some NYC Compost Project and GrowNYC food waste drop-off sites are reopening across the city. Check the map to find a drop-off location nearby by clicking here.
For information on the GrowNYC Compost Program and the places that are open to take waste, click here.
For more information on composting in New York City click here and on this web page.
In New Jersey they share a document that explains what the process is about and the places where residents can take the natural compost when it is ready. Here the information.
The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection offers a website with all the resources and links related to composting. For more information click here.