Recycling & Composting


Earth Week Tip #4

I grew up in a family that recycled with gusto.  My parents came of age during the Great Depression and WWII.  It came natural to that generation, part of the cultural DNA formed by scrimping and saving and collecting scrap metal to beat the Axis Powers.

We didn't have curbside pickup back then, so we'd take our bundled newspapers and flattened cans to the local recycling center in my hometown of Centerville, OH.  (I later managed that center for a time in the 1970s).

Madison has always been a recycling leader and in 1968 became the first city in the nation to introduce curbside pickup.

Curbside makes it easy and convenient, boosting participation.  But we still need to do it right.  Here are some reminders issued recently by the city. 

If you're like me, it helps to get updated as to what goes where.  

My family was also big into composting.  We always had a mulch pile in our backyard, from which we'd spread the nutrient-rich compost on our big vegetable garden.  

Madison doesn't have curbside pickup of organics like some cities do. Yes, we did have a pilot program, but that was discontinued last year due to too many contaminants mucking up the system.  Perhaps Mayor Satya can figure out how to bring it back.

No need to wait. There are many reasons to get on the composting bandwagon. For example, composting leaves from your yard will 100% guarantee they won't end up adding to the phosphorous load polluting Lake Wingra and Monona Bay. 

(Fun fact: one pound of phosphorous generates 500 lbs of lake weeds.  Yikes!)

Perhaps you'd like to compost but you don't have room to do so.  Check with your neighbors.  If they compost, they might be willing to take on your organics.  

For information as to how to get started composting, click here and here.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Compost!



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Alder Tag Evers

Alder Tag Evers

District 13
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