Monday, May 5, 2008

More on Composting

I heard back from the Zero Waste program in my city. Indeed, compostable food is not accepted in the yard waste bin. Here are the details:

Food is not accepted in the yard waste cart because our compost operation can not accept anything but yard trimmings. This is what our State permit allows. The yard trimmings are composted in open rows. Food is not usually composted this way because of smell and animals that are attracted to the food.

The current location of the compost facility is closing when the landfill closes and there is no plan to keep compost in Palo Alto because the land was designated as park 30 years ago. It will take a vote of the people to change the designation and allow compost to continue there and to compost food would likely necessitate an enclosed system to contain the food. So there are two things here, land use and money to acquire a closed system.

Also, the contract with PASCO ends next year and we have requested proposals for contracted services to include a price and specifics for expanding composting to include food. If so, the material would need to be hauled somewhere to a facility that compost it. If not composted here, the closest place is Gilroy.

The proposals are due this month and Council will be approving the award of the new contract in September 2008.

The more residents can do at home, the better. It will keep costs down.

We will see what the Home Composting Workshop in June does for us...

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