Why Compost Rather Than Landfill?
Did you know that a 2018 study sponsored by Eagle County Solid Waste and Recycling found that 37.4 percent of the waste going into the Eagle County landfill is organic material that could be diverted and composted. Food Waste is the single largest component of the waste stream (by weight) in the United States. (Source: ECSWR, EPA)
What is Composting?
Composting is the controlled aerobic, or oxygen-requiring, decomposition of organic materials like food scraps, yard trimmings, and paper by microorganisms into a dark colored, sweet-smelling soil amendment called compost. Compost adds needed nutrients to the soil, improves plant health, increases water retention, reduces the reliance on chemical pesticides and fertilizers, increases the carbon sequestration capacity of soil, and helps prevent nutrient runoff and soil erosion. It can also greatly reduce the amount of material going to our landfill. Organic substances require oxygen, sunlight, and beneficial microorganisms to successfully breakdown. Landfills, however, are anaerobic, or oxygen-depleted, environments where organic substances take longer to decompose and give out higher amounts of methane, a greenhouse gas 23 times more potent than carbon dioxide, during the decomposition process.
What You Can Do To Compost At Your Home
1.) Start your own compost pile at home. From a small indoor worm bin to a pile in the backyard, there are many ways to compost at home in the high country, even if you do not have a yard. Find the method that best fits your lifestyle and environmental conditions.
2.) Sign up for residential compost drop-site access through Vail Honeywagon coming soon to designated locations throughout Eagle County. If you are a business, sign up for commercial compost pickup through Vail Honeywagon or EverGreen ZeroWaste.
3.) To learn more about composting and how to get started visit https://www.walkingmountains.org/composting/.