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Curbside composting set to start - Metro US

Curbside composting set to start

Vancouver hopes to mine black gold from discarded vegetable peelings and table scraps.

Curbside composting begins in Vancouver today — Earth Day — for detached homes with municipal garbage pickup.

“We’re behind most other major cities in English speaking North America,” said Coun. Andrea Reimer.

Curbside composting, which lets people add uncooked fruit and vegetables, eggshells, teabags and coffee grinds to their yard-trimmings bin, was the No. 1 idea suggested during consultation by Vancouver’s Greenest City Action Team.

While previous councils may have desired curbside composting, Reimer said, they were stymied by problems like how and where to process the organic waste and how to roll it out to both detached houses and apartments.

As a result, the initiative will be introduced in phases. The first will aim to divert 6,100 tonnes of food scraps annually from the city’s landfill to a composting facility in Richmond.

Phase two, which would begin in 2011, would switch garbage pickup so that organics, including all food waste, would be picked up weekly. Regular garbage would get picked up every two weeks.

The initiative, however, does little for apartment dwellers, other than offer a list of private haulers they can hire to collect their food waste.

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