Being Green Just Got a Little Easier

Wednesday is garbage/recycling/green bin day on my street. The green bin is picked up every week and the recycling and garbage is picked up every other week.

I spend most of my time at my boyfriend’s and since he doesn’t have green bin recycling, I have been bringing green bin recycling to my house since the inception of the program in Toronto. 

Until now.

His building just got a green bin recycling program! I am so excited! I will no longer have to carry recycling on my back from his place to mine- about a 75 minute walk. I also did the same with cooking clients who did not have access to a green bin program or composting. I was pretty giddy when it dawned on me.

I will still separate compostable materials and bring them to work. A friend in the office takes this and whatever coffee grains, tea bags etc that end up in the same bag home to feed his compost bin. He doesn’t produce enough vegetable matter to keep his compost bin active so I accumulate bags of this stuff in the underutilized freezer (to keep it from smelling up the office) and this eventually becomes food for his garden.

Win-win-win.

This may sound a little rabid but the inconvenience of lugging around decaying material from one destination to another is negligible. I try not to be a Nazi about composting at work but I will encourage people to throw it into the chip bags earmarked for composting if the opportunity to divert something from the garbage presents itself. 

And yes, you read correctly. I save the large chip bags at home and use them to carry compost from one location to the next so I can save the shopping bags for green bin recycling. I know the compost will be frozen so I don’t need to keep a tight lid on it and it gives the chip bags a second life.

There has been some resistance at work to the accumulation of frozen compost but this only happens if my friend has not had a chance to take it home. I have casually brought up the idea of setting up a vermicomposter. This is something I would love at home. After a few months you would end up with some amazing fertilizer. The thought of having a “worm condo” in the kitchen wigged people out even more than having compost live in the freezer until it is taken offsite. 

It doesn’t take that much to turn people off the idea of composting. They are just excuses and it is more about laziness than anything. It is not hard to divert a banana peel from the garbage and have it eventually fertilize the herbs growing on your windowsill. A little education will go a long way to show people that it is not disgusting if done properly. 

This may all seem a little pointless (and gross) to some. What difference will one apple core or tea bag make in our overflowing landfills?

Since the inception of the Green Bin program in September of 2004, I have diverted, on average, two grocery bags of “organics” from my boyfriend’s a week. 

And I am just one person. You do the math.

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~ by angryegg on March 11, 2009.

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