Students' Gift Makes It Possible To Divert 90,000 lbs of Waste From Local Landfill

Compost Collection Carts Are Ready To Roll
Wednesday, January 6, 2016 - 5:01pm

REI, the student-led "Renewable Energy Initiative" group at Appalachian State University donated $7,150 toward the purchase of two hydraulically-equipped, waste-collection carts.  The carts will make it possible for the Physical Plant to collect more waste from App State's cafeterias, diverting it from the landfill in Boone to App State's compost facility on State Farm Road.

"We've been recycling our food waste on campus for years," explained Dr. Greg Taylor, Director of Campus Services, "but up until now we've only been able to collect the kitchen leftovers from food preparation.  These new carts will allow us to increase the volume of our collection.  Now in addition to the pre-consumer kitchen waste, we will also be collecting post-consumer waste,  the leftovers that students didn't eat."

That amounts to something in the neighborhood of 90,000 lbs. per year and it's abolute gold in the compost world.

"After mixing the food slurry with sawdust and leaves and curing the mix for 180 days,  we reap some beautiful, dark, rich compost," Dr. Taylor stated. 

The compost will be used to enrich lawns that get compacted by student use, and it will be used to fortify flower beds on campus.  

"We're so grateful to REI and the students of App State for this gift," stated Mike O'Connor, Physical Plant Director.  "We've been working very hard at the Physical Plant toward achieving our campus's goal of becoming a 'Zero Waste' university, and knowing that students have made this their priority encourages us all the more.  REI has helped our community get one step closer to our 'Zero Waste' goal with their gift."

Learn more about 'Zero Waste' campus initiatives.

Photos of the compost process here.

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PO Box 32105
Boone, NC 28608-2105
Phone: 828.262.3190

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