Celebrate International Compost Awareness Week

In the US, the beginning of May has people thinking of several celebrations, including Cinco de Mayo, Mother’s Day, and even Star Wars Day (May the 4th, as in “May the Fourth Be With You”). But did you know the first week of May is also celebrated annually as International Compost Awareness Week?

 

Composting allows organic materials, such as food scraps and yard waste, to break down naturally into a nutrient rich resource that can be used in gardening and landscaping in place of commercially available fertilizers. Application of compost reduces erosion, and can help your soil retain water, reducing costs associated with watering and contributing to water conservation. Composting can also reduce waste hauling costs, as well as greenhouse gas emissions associated with the breakdown of organic materials in landfills in the absence of oxygen.

 

If you’d like to learn more about composting, check out the following resources:

 

If you’re a college or university student interested in pursuing research related to composting, check out the CCREF Young Investigator Scholarship.

About Joy Scrogum

Joy is a Sustainability Specialist at the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC), a division of the Prairie Research Institute at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She has worked on developing & maintaining online resources for the Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable since 2001. She also currently coordinates the Sustainable Electronics Initiative & works on Zero Waste Illinois projects, including the Illini Gadget Garage and the Green Lunchroom Challenge. Key past projects include coordinating the International Sustainable Electronics Competition, developing & teaching ENG 498 "Sustainable Technology: Environmental & Social Impacts of Innovations," & Greening Schools, which focused on making K-12 facilities & curricula more sustainable.
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