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Composting at the Office

One of the many green amenities I offer at my properties  is composting.  When a new company moves into one of my buildings they get a beautiful living orchid and a compost bin to get them started in the right direction.   

Since the average American tosses away 4.5 pounds of trash per day, but approximately 25% could be compost.  Composting is a critical step in reducing the garbage sent to landfills, which produce methane gas 72% more powerful than carbon dioxide.  What a difference we could make to our environment if we could all do something as simple as compost our biodegradable materials.  Compostable materials tend to way more than other items that go in the garbage so if your garbage is weighed at each pickup separating it out can possibly save a lot off your bottom line.

Here are some basic steps on starting your office compost program:

  • Find a local provider in your area.  Google or your local municipality works well to come up with local providers.  I am lucky to have an amazing vendor in Seattle called Cedar Grove Compost.
  • Reach out to like-minded people and operations to meet with the vendor and discuss how the project would operate.  Questions to think about:  How many pickups per week, where the bins will be located for pickup, cost, janitorial staff pickup and any challenges to the building layout for service.
  • Order the bins that each tenant will need.  Amazon offers bins and compostable liners of all sizes, a large bin with a lid for a bigger tenant or smaller stainless steel or plastic kitchen counter bins for coffee grounds and banana peels.
  • EDUCATE THE MASSES!  Work with your compost vendor, janitorial, and the others that are passionate to educate everyone on what goes in what bin.  Plastic is NOT biodegradable!  Napkins ARE!
  • Launch your program!  Continue to monitor use and any contamination.  Periodic educational sessions are always great to educate new employees and companies that transition through the property.

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