Monday, July 28, 2014

Composting, round 2

Did you ever notice in life that there is sometimes a difference between knowing what is the right thing to do, and actually doing it? I mean things like choosing to eat more veggies and fruits and less ice cream (I'd never advocate against eating ice cream). Or walk instead of drive, even when the weather is bad. The voice inside you tells you the right thing to do, but (at least I) often take the more comfortable route. Or get up and run or bike when you'd much rather sleep in just a little longer.

The same is true for me about composting. I know it would be fabulous to keep organic waste out of the trash, but I don't do it. A local farm tried their hand at collecting compost, and we gladly participated, but they gave up that program after a few months.

Recently we started bringing our food waste to a neighbor's house. They can have all of our future mulch. We are just happy to keep it out of the waste stream and feel like we are doing something good for the environment.

Lawrence Township is trying to build on Princeton's organic waste program. It is completely voluntary. Once a week a truck will come around and pick up your organic waste. Much easier than going to a neighbor's house. Equally as easy as putting it in the big blue trash container we are all issued.

The blurb from the township website:

  • Lawrence Eco-Curbside Waste Collection
    Lawrence Township will be offering voluntary Food Waste Recycling in the near future.  In order to kick start the program, the vendor must have three hundred participants to initiate the collection program. For more details regarding this program click on the attached link. For details on several meetings scheduled to provide additional information see the attachedTo sign upinterested residents should contact the Public Works Department at (609) 587-1894 or by email at to be placed on a list for further instructions.

  • So the main kickers are:
    1) We need at least 300 families (currently have around 200).
    2) There is a $17 a month fee, which (thanks to a grant from Sustainable Jersey) will be reduced to $12 a year for the first 300 families to sign up.
    3) You can cut your fee in half by sharing a green bucket with your neighbor. One family signs up, but you each pay for half of it.

    A common concern I have heard is: but won't it smell and attract critters? Well, no more than when you dispose of the food waste in the regular trash.

    Come on, Lawrence residents! This is a trend. Just like in my lifetime we went from driving our cans and bottles to a recycling center, also within my lifetime organic curbside pick up will become the norm. Let's work together to make this happen sooner rather than later.


    1. Thanks for the excellent post, Jacquie! Any of your other neighbors interested? If each person who is already signed up talks to at least one other person about the many advantages of this program and convinces them to sign up, that will allow us to reach our goal of signing up 300 people all the more quickly. Again thanks for the post!

    2. I have not been able to convince people to sign up. Please share this post with any groups you think will post it. Trying to find fresh ways to put a spin on this.