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Bike-Based Compost Collection Trials

Posted in Models, Research by Kate Archdeacon on September 15th, 2010

From Treehugger

Compost Bikes, St Paul, Minn by Brendan Sullivan, Star Tribune

Image by Brendan Sullivan for Star Tribune

Composting and bikes combine in new business model being trialled in the US.  A composting service for people who want to reduce waste but don’t use compost or don’t have worm farms has started hoping to provide low carbon and sensible service to deal with and reuse useful waste.

Composting is catching on nationwide as more cities provide services to residents for collecting food, landscape clippings and other compostable separate from recylables and landfill waste. But to test out if the St. Paul, Minn.’s Macalester-Groveland neighborhood is ready for such a program, Sonya Ewert is hopping on a 27-gear bike with a custom-made trailer and going door to door to collect compostables from residents. The bike-powered composting service is part of an experiment — if enough residents like having their food waste collected, the city may move forward in providing the service on a large scale through their waste and recycling collection services. For Ewert, helping to get the new component added to the sanitation service is truly a (smelly) labor of love.

The Star Tribune writes that the project is a three-month long experiment to see if the residents are keen to compost, and if so, Eureka Recycling may take on collecting food waste separately as part of their service. For the area, food waste represents about 12% of the waste stream, and food-contaminated paper another 10%, so the potential for waste diversion from landfills is huge.

Read the full story by Jaymi Heimbuch on Treehugger

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