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Bikes Travel Door-to-Door in Community Composting Experiment

Jace Shoemaker-Galloway | Thursday August 19th, 2010 | 4 Comments

A three-month, experiment is currently underway in a neighborhood in St. Paul, Minnesota.  Eureka Recycling is testing a door-to-door bike-powered composting service in an effort to collect compostable waste.  

As part of the city’s goal of becoming waste-free by 2020, the composting project is collaboration between the Macalester-Groveland Community Council (MGCC) and Eureka Recycling.  The project, which began in the spring, involves 1,100 households in the neighborhood.  The experimental project is looking into backyard composting, how to reduce food waste, different ways to use finished compost and different ways to make dirt.  The project will also test three different transportation methods to collect food scraps in different areas of the community using a recycling truck, a drop-off site and the door-to-door bicycle method.  The bikes, provided by The Hub Bike Co-Op, travel the neighborhood with custom-made trailers.

According to the company, food waste and non-recyclable paper items represents 25 percent of what goes into the waste stream.  Composting not only reduces landfill waste, but also reduces greenhouse gas emissions and improves the quality of the soil.  While worm and backyard composting are effective ways to reduce waste, some people are not quite ready to undertake composting.  The service is being offered to residents in the Macalester-Groveland neighborhood who are interested in reducing waste but are not quite ready to compost on their own.  

If the experiment proves successful, the city may include the collection of food waste as part of their city-wide service.  Visit the website for more information on worm composting or backyard composting.

Eureka Recycles, a non-profit organization, is one of the largest zero-waste organizations in the country and the only organization in the state that specializes in zero waste.


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  • http://www.greengurunetwork.com Lea Cullen

    Fantastic idea. It would be great to link this with volunteers who are looking for a social biking experience. They could travel in teams collect compost, get in shape, chat, form community.

  • http://www.ecocycle.org Eric Lombardi

    Congrats from Colorado! I hope you folks in St.Paul know how lucky you are to have Eureka in your town! I also run a nonprofit zero waste company in Boulder, and we’ll be watching a learning from Eureka on this innovative new idea!

  • http://www.ecoramblings.com Luke

    Very innovative! I’ll repost on my blog http://www.ecoramblings.com Eric, I hope to see bike composting in Boulder soon too!

  • Dana Winograd

    Fantastic idea. Can you provide some feedback on how it went?

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