According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, one third of greenhouse emissions globally come from agriculture, and 30% of the food we produce is wasted – about 1.8 billion tonnes of it a year. If, as a planet, we stopped wasting food altogether, we’d eliminate 8% of our total emissions caused by unnecessary agricultural production.
More than that, most of the wasted food goes into landfill where it rots and produces methane, a very potent greenhouse gas. Composting is an alternative which reduces greenhouse gas emissions by returning waste to the soil as a form of carbon storage and as a means of enhancing productivity of the soil and reducing fertiliser usage. Plants that grow in the soil act as a sponge that can soak up emissions currently in the atmosphere. Each small step is a contribution to limiting the impacts of climate change.
Hepburn Shire Council is dedicated to keeping waste and valuable resources out of landfill and is supporting residents on their low waste journey by offering subsidised compost bins to give a new life to food scraps and garden waste.
Deputy Mayor, Cr Jen Bray, said Council has identified that landfill bins in our Shire contain up to 56% food and garden material.
“By composting at home residents can reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, divert organic waste from landfill and produce a nutrient rich soil that is great for the garden,” said Cr Bray. “Composting doesn’t need to be hard and it’s something we can all do to divert waste from landfill. And there’s nothing better than compost for your garden,” said Cr Bray.
To promote composting, Council is making two different types of composters available to residents: a 180 litre ROTO Tumbler for $40 and a 210 litre Composter bin for $25. There are a limited number of ROTO Tumbler and Composter bins available at our transfer stations to get the community started on their composting journey. Proof of residency required.
There will also be an opportunity to learn more about composting at an upcoming workshop. Community members can complete a short survey to express their interest in a Beginners Composting Workshop at https://forms.office.com/r/YU2vp8jxYk