At the moment there aren’t too many places blessed with commercial composting facilities. Which is a shame because putting organic matter into landfill encourages it to decrease anerobically and therefore produces methane as a byproduct. Evil methane is said to be up to 20 times more potent as a green house gas than carbon dioxide. So If there’s one thing we’re really keen on, it’s making use of that organic matter.
On Site Composting
Composting on site has a few big benefits. The first is that a system usually based on people power, rather than trucks using fossil fuels, can be implemented. The second is that over the course of a year the organic matter that has been collected will become beautiful food for fruit, veggies and flowers. It can even be used to help revegitate areas of the festival site that have suffered from the event. And of course, with not organic matter going to landfill, cost savings can be made in dumpage costs.The downside is that unless the event is held in a permanent location, landowners are not as keen to have a composting area on their land and that a local ‘composting champion’ often has to be appointed to maintain the composting.
There are a few types of community group that will often take the festivals organic waste, provided it is pre-shredded. Schools partaking in the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Gardens scheme usually have on-site composting, although events with a capacity larger than 4,000 may flood just one school and are better off arranging to deliver to a few different schools. Other social groups worth talking to are community gardens and local farmers.
The hassle free alternative is to find a waste management company that has a commercial composting facility near by. Commercial composting facilities can process large amounts of organic material at once and depending on the type of facility, may also be able to compost PLA , cornstarch and other biodegradable materials that typically need a higher heat to break down optimally. Of course there’s usually a cost involved for collection but it’s a way of keep you hands clean. So to speak.