In the last year we lived in NW3, our local authority introduced food composting. I was sceptical. I couldn’t imagine how it would work, with having a bin in the kitchen with food scraps, which is then transferred to a bin outside our house and taken away by the bin men once a week. Surely a recipe for rats? I was reluctant to start with but gave it a go and I was converted: the amount of food waste created by a small family is massive once you start actually separating it. I became a bit of a zealot with the food scraps and whilst R was hard to convince, eventually he was doing it too – apart from the odd rogue tea bag, which I rescued, much to his disgust.
So when we came to NYC I kind of missed this slightly OCD activity. I was delighted to read that Mayor Bloomberg is going to introduce food composting into New York as part of his last hurrah as mayor. There were some articles in the press here in the last few days talking about creating new facilities to handle the food waste and turn it into green energy and an estimate that around 10 per cent of the food waste would be composted. There are a range of recycling laws in NYC about paper, plastics etc and for now food composting will be voluntary, but possibly in the future the laws will mandate everyone to separate food waste. I was amused to see down on 14th Street, Union Square, a corner of the park dedicated to huge bins of food waste and some dedicated recyclers selling compost to passers by. Clearly ahead of the curve there.
See the New York Times for more info.