Vermicomposting at Home – Food Waste Optimization III

Vermicomposting at Home – Food Waste Optimization III

This is the final section in Bentley’s 3 part series with making your food scrap submissions the best they can be.  Can’t go wrong with his advice…watch the pros!

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Vermicomposting at Home – Food Waste Optimization II

Vermicomposting at Home – Food Waste Optimization II

Here’s part 2 in Bentley’s excellent series on prepping your food scraps for worms for the best results.  Learn from the master!

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Vermicomposting at Home – Food Waste Optimization

Vermicomposting at Home – Food Waste Optimization

This is part one of a 3-part vermicomposting series done by THE dude Bentley Christie.  Follow these tips and your worms will give you no hassles, ever.

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Fate of food waste sent to Wilmington uncertain if Peninsula Compost facility closes (article)

by Larry Nagengast
September 26th, 2014

The possible shutdown of Peninsula Compost’s Wilmington Organic Recycling Center prompts a question that should concern Delawareans who have yet to catch a whiff of the facility’s odors.

If the facility in Wilmington’s Southbridge community is closed, where do all the composting materials go? Would the odor be moved from Southbridge to a location where it would impact a different group of residents?

“Yes and no,” says Bill Miller, environmental program manager in DNREC’s Solid and Hazardous Waste Management Section, which oversees the facility.

Peninsula’s current license allows it to process up to 120,000 tons of food waste and 40,000 tons of yard waste a year.

A small amount would go to other composting facilities, Miller says. There are two other commercial composting sites in Delaware. Blue Hen Organic in Frankford accepts food wastes, while Blessings Blends in Milford accepts poultry wastes but not food wastes, Miller says.

Neither facility is as large as Peninsula, and both are far from northern New Castle County where much of the food waste processed at Peninsula is generated, so they would not be likely to take on much of the materials processed in Wilmington, he says.

If the same amount of food and yard wastes were moved to a site of similar size in an area like Middletown, Dover or Lewes, and the plant were managed in the same way, chances are the odors would be similar, Miller says.

But the impact of the odor would be different if a plant accepted more or less waste, if it used different equipment, or if it were located in a less populous area, he says.

Environmental activist Alan Muller, executive director of Green Delaware, says it is possible that a closure could play out as “a zero-sum game,” with the odor problem moving from Southbridge to another location, but he doesn’t think it will necessarily happen that way.

Muller points out that Peninsula has the capacity to process more food wastes than can be generated in Delaware, and it has been known to accept materials trucked in from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and occasionally from New York. If Peninsula were closed, trucks that are traveling a significant distance to get to Wilmington may seek a destination other than one in a more distant part of Delaware.

“Maybe there’s an area in south Jersey where they’re used to odors and feedlots and would be more accepting,” he says.

As part of its operating procedures, Peninsula is required to develop a closure plan. That plan, revised most recently in June, estimates that it would cost a little more than $400,000 to shut down the facility. The plan calls for hauling unprocessed solid waste materials to landfills, while completing the composting of any waste materials on which the process has already begun. Overall, it would take about 120 days to complete the shutdown.

The 18 state legislators who wrote DNREC earlier this month asking that Peninsula not be granted a new permit acknowledged in their letter that “there are additional factors involved regarding diversion of waste to the Cherry Island landfill and businesses that utilize the compost facility for organic recycling.” They offered to assist DNREC if it appears that legislative action would be required to resolve issues associated with a possible closure.

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Has the shutdown of their facility given composting a bad name (smell)?

I think there’s two factors at play here- first of all, the volumes of material sent to this facility are tremendous.  I have a feeling when you’re dealing with several hundred tons of material per day, you can have all the brown materials in the world and still have challenges with managing the windrows.

The other problem is that separating compostable material from garbage is really difficult, and certainly a major factor in the site’s constant odor battle.  More stringent contamination limits would most likely help.

I’ve visited this site several times, and I was always impressed with their systems in place.  I don’t remember the facility smelling disgusting, but I’m around trash every day so who knows?

Here in Pennsylvania, there are successful composting operations that have operated for many years on just an acre or two- no odor issues paired with strict contamination guidelines.

The key to successfully expanding on composting going forward is to open more small sites instead of a few massive ones that will inevitably have odor issues and negatively affect the neighboring communities.

The other key component is to have more people compost at home- I know, such an insane idea.  There’s no point in waiting for our communities to provide composting services for us- just start doing it yourself and see what you’re missing!

The possible shutdown of Peninsula Compost’s Wilmington Organic Recycling Center prompts a question that should concern Delawareans who have yet to catch a whiff of the facility’s odors.

If the facility in Wilmington’s Southbridge community is closed, where do all the composting materials go? Would the odor be moved from Southbridge to a location where it would impact a different group of residents?

“Yes and no,” says Bill Miller, environmental program manager in DNREC’s Solid and Hazardous Waste Management Section, which oversees the facility.

Peninsula’s current license allows it to process up to 120,000 tons of food waste and 40,000 tons of yard waste a year.

- See more at: http://www.wdde.org/68094-compost-sidebar#sthash.pVM8PA8M.dpuf

by By Larry NagengastSeptember 26, 2014
By Larry NagengastSeptember 26, 2014

The possible shutdown of Peninsula Compost’s Wilmington Organic Recycling Center prompts a question that should concern Delawareans who have yet to catch a whiff of the facility’s odors.

If the facility in Wilmington’s Southbridge community is closed, where do all the composting materials go? Would the odor be moved from Southbridge to a location where it would impact a different group of residents?

“Yes and no,” says Bill Miller, environmental program manager in DNREC’s Solid and Hazardous Waste Management Section, which oversees the facility.

Peninsula’s current license allows it to process up to 120,000 tons of food waste and 40,000 tons of yard waste a year.

A small amount would go to other composting facilities, Miller says. There are two other commercial composting sites in Delaware. Blue Hen Organic in Frankford accepts food wastes, while Blessings Blends in Milford accepts poultry wastes but not food wastes, Miller says.

Neither facility is as large as Peninsula, and both are far from northern New Castle County where much of the food waste processed at Peninsula is generated, so they would not be likely to take on much of the materials processed in Wilmington, he says.

If the same amount of food and yard wastes were moved to a site of similar size in an area like Middletown, Dover or Lewes, and the plant were managed in the same way, chances are the odors would be similar, Miller says.

But the impact of the odor would be different if a plant accepted more or less waste, if it used different equipment, or if it were located in a less populous area, he says.

Environmental activist Alan Muller, executive director of Green Delaware, says it is possible that a closure could play out as “a zero-sum game,” with the odor problem moving from Southbridge to another location, but he doesn’t think it will necessarily happen that way.

Muller points out that Peninsula has the capacity to process more food wastes than can be generated in Delaware, and it has been known to accept materials trucked in from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and occasionally from New York. If Peninsula were closed, trucks that are traveling a significant distance to get to Wilmington may seek a destination other than one in a more distant part of Delaware.

“Maybe there’s an area in south Jersey where they’re used to odors and feedlots and would be more accepting,” he says.

As part of its operating procedures, Peninsula is required to develop a closure plan. That plan, revised most recently in June, estimates that it would cost a little more than $400,000 to shut down the facility. The plan calls for hauling unprocessed solid waste materials to landfills, while completing the composting of any waste materials on which the process has already begun. Overall, it would take about 120 days to complete the shutdown.

The 18 state legislators who wrote DNREC earlier this month asking that Peninsula not be granted a new permit acknowledged in their letter that “there are additional factors involved regarding diversion of waste to the Cherry Island landfill and businesses that utilize the compost facility for organic recycling.” They offered to assist DNREC if it appears that legislative action would be required to resolve issues associated with a possible closure.

- See more at: http://www.wdde.org/68094-compost-sidebar#sthash.pVM8PA8M.dpuf

The possible shutdown of Peninsula Compost’s Wilmington Organic Recycling Center prompts a question that should concern Delawareans who have yet to catch a whiff of the facility’s odors.

If the facility in Wilmington’s Southbridge community is closed, where do all the composting materials go? Would the odor be moved from Southbridge to a location where it would impact a different group of residents?

“Yes and no,” says Bill Miller, environmental program manager in DNREC’s Solid and Hazardous Waste Management Section, which oversees the facility.

Peninsula’s current license allows it to process up to 120,000 tons of food waste and 40,000 tons of yard waste a year.

A small amount would go to other composting facilities, Miller says. There are two other commercial composting sites in Delaware. Blue Hen Organic in Frankford accepts food wastes, while Blessings Blends in Milford accepts poultry wastes but not food wastes, Miller says.

Neither facility is as large as Peninsula, and both are far from northern New Castle County where much of the food waste processed at Peninsula is generated, so they would not be likely to take on much of the materials processed in Wilmington, he says.

If the same amount of food and yard wastes were moved to a site of similar size in an area like Middletown, Dover or Lewes, and the plant were managed in the same way, chances are the odors would be similar, Miller says.

But the impact of the odor would be different if a plant accepted more or less waste, if it used different equipment, or if it were located in a less populous area, he says.

Environmental activist Alan Muller, executive director of Green Delaware, says it is possible that a closure could play out as “a zero-sum game,” with the odor problem moving from Southbridge to another location, but he doesn’t think it will necessarily happen that way.

Muller points out that Peninsula has the capacity to process more food wastes than can be generated in Delaware, and it has been known to accept materials trucked in from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and occasionally from New York. If Peninsula were closed, trucks that are traveling a significant distance to get to Wilmington may seek a destination other than one in a more distant part of Delaware.

“Maybe there’s an area in south Jersey where they’re used to odors and feedlots and would be more accepting,” he says.

As part of its operating procedures, Peninsula is required to develop a closure plan. That plan, revised most recently in June, estimates that it would cost a little more than $400,000 to shut down the facility. The plan calls for hauling unprocessed solid waste materials to landfills, while completing the composting of any waste materials on which the process has already begun. Overall, it would take about 120 days to complete the shutdown.

The 18 state legislators who wrote DNREC earlier this month asking that Peninsula not be granted a new permit acknowledged in their letter that “there are additional factors involved regarding diversion of waste to the Cherry Island landfill and businesses that utilize the compost facility for organic recycling.” They offered to assist DNREC if it appears that legislative action would be required to resolve issues associated with a possible closure.

- See more at: http://www.wdde.org/68094-compost-sidebar#sthash.pVM8PA8M.dpuf

The possible shutdown of Peninsula Compost’s Wilmington Organic Recycling Center prompts a question that should concern Delawareans who have yet to catch a whiff of the facility’s odors.

If the facility in Wilmington’s Southbridge community is closed, where do all the composting materials go? Would the odor be moved from Southbridge to a location where it would impact a different group of residents?

“Yes and no,” says Bill Miller, environmental program manager in DNREC’s Solid and Hazardous Waste Management Section, which oversees the facility.

Peninsula’s current license allows it to process up to 120,000 tons of food waste and 40,000 tons of yard waste a year.

A small amount would go to other composting facilities, Miller says. There are two other commercial composting sites in Delaware. Blue Hen Organic in Frankford accepts food wastes, while Blessings Blends in Milford accepts poultry wastes but not food wastes, Miller says.

Neither facility is as large as Peninsula, and both are far from northern New Castle County where much of the food waste processed at Peninsula is generated, so they would not be likely to take on much of the materials processed in Wilmington, he says.

If the same amount of food and yard wastes were moved to a site of similar size in an area like Middletown, Dover or Lewes, and the plant were managed in the same way, chances are the odors would be similar, Miller says.

But the impact of the odor would be different if a plant accepted more or less waste, if it used different equipment, or if it were located in a less populous area, he says.

Environmental activist Alan Muller, executive director of Green Delaware, says it is possible that a closure could play out as “a zero-sum game,” with the odor problem moving from Southbridge to another location, but he doesn’t think it will necessarily happen that way.

Muller points out that Peninsula has the capacity to process more food wastes than can be generated in Delaware, and it has been known to accept materials trucked in from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and occasionally from New York. If Peninsula were closed, trucks that are traveling a significant distance to get to Wilmington may seek a destination other than one in a more distant part of Delaware.

“Maybe there’s an area in south Jersey where they’re used to odors and feedlots and would be more accepting,” he says.

As part of its operating procedures, Peninsula is required to develop a closure plan. That plan, revised most recently in June, estimates that it would cost a little more than $400,000 to shut down the facility. The plan calls for hauling unprocessed solid waste materials to landfills, while completing the composting of any waste materials on which the process has already begun. Overall, it would take about 120 days to complete the shutdown.

The 18 state legislators who wrote DNREC earlier this month asking that Peninsula not be granted a new permit acknowledged in their letter that “there are additional factors involved regarding diversion of waste to the Cherry Island landfill and businesses that utilize the compost facility for organic recycling.” They offered to assist DNREC if it appears that legislative action would be required to resolve issues associated with a possible closure.

- See more at: http://www.wdde.org/68094-compost-sidebar#sthash.pVM8PA8M.dpuf

The possible shutdown of Peninsula Compost’s Wilmington Organic Recycling Center prompts a question that should concern Delawareans who have yet to catch a whiff of the facility’s odors.

If the facility in Wilmington’s Southbridge community is closed, where do all the composting materials go? Would the odor be moved from Southbridge to a location where it would impact a different group of residents?

“Yes and no,” says Bill Miller, environmental program manager in DNREC’s Solid and Hazardous Waste Management Section, which oversees the facility.

Peninsula’s current license allows it to process up to 120,000 tons of food waste and 40,000 tons of yard waste a year.

A small amount would go to other composting facilities, Miller says. There are two other commercial composting sites in Delaware. Blue Hen Organic in Frankford accepts food wastes, while Blessings Blends in Milford accepts poultry wastes but not food wastes, Miller says.

Neither facility is as large as Peninsula, and both are far from northern New Castle County where much of the food waste processed at Peninsula is generated, so they would not be likely to take on much of the materials processed in Wilmington, he says.

If the same amount of food and yard wastes were moved to a site of similar size in an area like Middletown, Dover or Lewes, and the plant were managed in the same way, chances are the odors would be similar, Miller says.

But the impact of the odor would be different if a plant accepted more or less waste, if it used different equipment, or if it were located in a less populous area, he says.

Environmental activist Alan Muller, executive director of Green Delaware, says it is possible that a closure could play out as “a zero-sum game,” with the odor problem moving from Southbridge to another location, but he doesn’t think it will necessarily happen that way.

Muller points out that Peninsula has the capacity to process more food wastes than can be generated in Delaware, and it has been known to accept materials trucked in from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and occasionally from New York. If Peninsula were closed, trucks that are traveling a significant distance to get to Wilmington may seek a destination other than one in a more distant part of Delaware.

“Maybe there’s an area in south Jersey where they’re used to odors and feedlots and would be more accepting,” he says.

As part of its operating procedures, Peninsula is required to develop a closure plan. That plan, revised most recently in June, estimates that it would cost a little more than $400,000 to shut down the facility. The plan calls for hauling unprocessed solid waste materials to landfills, while completing the composting of any waste materials on which the process has already begun. Overall, it would take about 120 days to complete the shutdown.

The 18 state legislators who wrote DNREC earlier this month asking that Peninsula not be granted a new permit acknowledged in their letter that “there are additional factors involved regarding diversion of waste to the Cherry Island landfill and businesses that utilize the compost facility for organic recycling.” They offered to assist DNREC if it appears that legislative action would be required to resolve issues associated with a possible closure.

- See more at: http://www.wdde.org/68094-compost-sidebar#sthash.pVM8PA8M.dpuf

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COMPOST PILE ORGANIC POTATO HARVEST (video)

COMPOST PILE ORGANIC POTATO HARVEST – Wisconsin Garden

Lark did a great job with these potatoes!

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COMPOST PILE ORGANIC POTATO REVEAL (video)

Part 2 COMPOST PILE ORGANIC POTATO REVEAL- Wisconsin Garden

Compost piles and potatoes go hand in hand, don’t they?

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Will This Compostable Bag Disappear in a Year?

compostable bag in compost pileI ran out of recycling bags yesterday at home, but I found two 2+ year old compostable bags that I was hoping I could use instead.  As soon as I started opening one, it ripped in half!

I guess that’s to be expected… compostable bags don’t have the shelf life that standard plastic does.

Anyway, I didn’t have much use for them now so I decided to throw one in my compost bin.

Next weekend, I will be halting my additions to the compost pile for one year, while I start bin number 2.  For those of you not aware, I have been following the Joe Jenkins method of humanure composting over the last year.

Since I started this composting method, my piles have gotten much hotter than ever before.  140 to 150 degrees is no problem to achieve; and sustaining this temperature range just might be the ticket to breaking down compostable plastic.

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Shredded Leaf Mulch vs Compost

Shredded Leaf Mulch vs COMPOST

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Freeze Your Food Scraps to Prevent Fruit Flies

Fruit flies compost

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Worx Leaf Shredder Review

Worx Leaf Shredder Review

The Worx WG430 Leaf Shredder has quickly become my favorite composting tool for its speed, ease of use and quality of the finished leaves.

I used a Black & Decker Leaf Hog until I realized I could do more with less energy using a standing shredder instead of a shoulder-mounted one.

The Worx shredder is essentially a weed whacker on a frame, and it sets up in seconds: Put the legs in the stand, put the shredder unit on top of the stand and plug it in.

It’s loud, and it’s kind of a mess.  It ejects leaves up into the air quite a bit, and you MUST wear glasses and a dust mask if you want to have fun using it.

For my routine, I sweep up a trash can’s worth of leaves and dump them in the chamber, using the can to minimize how much stuff kicks back in my face.

If the leaves are wet, this definitely slows down the process and wears down the trimmer line much quicker.

It comes with a lot of replacement trimmer line, and you will need it.  I’m currently looking for replacement line that isn’t plastic so I can cut down my waste as a result of using it.  That being said, replacement of the trimmer line can be done in the seconds without using any tools.

Otherwise, this thing hasn’t let me down yet.  It can jam sometimes if you really dump a lot in at once… you’ll notice in my video that I did that, and it can be remedied by just shaking the frame a little bit.

This tool really comes in handy for condensing my leaves for the Fall/Winter composting season.

If you’re looking for an affordable tool to save storage space through the winter and keep your compost pile cooking, I’d recommend checking this out.

For more information on Amazon, click here: http://amzn.to/1rSrzfv

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