It’s International Compost Week!
Composting is the most local form of recycling. Not only does it help us create a closed loop by turning food and yard waste into new soil, composting helps keep our yards happy and healthy.
Compost puts yard and table scraps to work. By adding important nutrients to the soil and improving water absorption, compost can improve the overall health of your garden. As a result, compost helps reduce the need for harmful pesticides and even helps fight climate change.
Compost is a wonderful tool to keep our yards healthy and reduce waste. This is why the Composting Council’s Research & Education Program has celebrated International Composting Awareness Week for 25 years! This week, from May 3 – May 9, join us in celebrating compost!
Stay Home & Compost On
With many people staying home, Salt Lake City has seen an increase in the use of our curbside brown bins. These containers are for yard trimmings as well as fruit & veggie scraps, coffee grounds, and egg shells.
As members of the community are spending more time at home, Salt Lake City’s Waste & Recycling teams are seeing an increase in the amount of household waste being collected.
Salt Lake City collected 22% more green waste (by weight) in March 2020 than March 2019.
And this year, between March and April, our green waste collection went up 148% as people stayed home and tended to yard work. (The April 2019 and April 2020 numbers are relatively similar because we had a big spring storm last year that sent our tonnage soaring. April 2019 was also a very wet year while April 2020 was the driest on record, so this makes our tonnage numbers equally stunning).
Materials collected in the brown bins are taken to the compost facility at the Salt Lake County Landfill. There, all those leaves, grass, branches, yard trimmings, fruit, vegetables, and other accepted waste is turned into U.S. Composting Council Certified compost.
Soil Loves Compost and So Do We!
Adding compost to your garden has many benefits. Compost adds nutrients to your soil, improving plant health. Moreover, by turning green and brown waste into compost rather than putting it in the trash, you’re helping reduce methane emissions from organic waste disposal. As a result, composting helps return nutrients to the soil and reduces greenhouse gas pollution.
Compost is also a great way to reduce water consumption in your garden. Compost efficiently absorbs water and helps soil retain moisture as temperatures climb. Additionally, compost minimizes the water that flows into storm drains, helping us limit water waste. According to the National Weather Service, April 2020 was the driest year on record for Salt Lake City. Reducing water waste is more important than ever.
Celebrate International Compost Week
To celebrate International Compost Week, we encourage you to put your fruit and veggie scraps to work for your yard! Get the scoop on DIY Composting or start using your brown curbside bin more to limit waste!
If you’re ready to start adding compost to your yard, don’t forget you can purchase compost at the Salt Lake Valley Landfill. Happy gardening!