The case for compost: Why recycling food waste is so much better than sending it to landfill

by Susanne Schmidt and Nicole Robinson, The Conversation

In Australia, households generate 3.1 million tons of food and garden waste annually, over half of which is organic waste. To combat this, the National Waste Policy Action Plan aims to increase organic waste recycling from 47% to 80% by 2030 and halve landfill waste. Composting, both at home and on a commercial scale, is a key strategy, supported by government investment in new composting facilities and council initiatives like weekly green bin collection.

Composting plays a crucial role in climate change mitigation by preventing the release of methane, a potent greenhouse gas produced when food rots in landfills without oxygen. In contrast, composting converts waste into valuable organic matter and captures carbon in the soil. This process, aligning with the international “4 per 1000” Initiative, can significantly reduce atmospheric CO₂ levels.

Research shows that precision compost strategies, which tailor compost types and application methods to specific crops and conditions, can boost global cereal crop production and replenish soil organic carbon. In Australia, where less than a third of households have food waste collection services, there is a growing opportunity for compost production and landfill diversion. High-quality composting and community participation are key to maximizing the benefits of organic waste recycling.

Discover the future of waste management with composting free technology

Handling organic waste properly can be challenging due to the unpleasant smell and dirty water produced during the composting process. Despite the availability of various composting technologies and equipment in the market, time and pollution remain significant concerns. However, a novel technology that combines patented equipment and enzymes offers a potential solution. This innovative approach can convert organic waste into fertilizer in just a few hours, and most importantly, without causing pollution.

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