A growing awareness of the benefits of composting is paying dividends beyond those found in the healthy produce and beautiful flowers compost can help create.
Students at Saco Middle School (and many other schools around Maine), through hands-on learning, are discovering the multiple benefits of composting. In addition to the obvious benefits you can taste, see and smell in the school’s Ecology Club greenhouse—students are learning that compost can be valuable on multiple levels.
The Saco Middle School Ecology Club members have helped increase student awareness about the amount of solid waste generated in the cafeteria. In fact, they’ve helped the school lower its lunch program waste by 90 percent, going from 10 bags of waste per lunch period down to just 1! The students were also treated to a field trip to the site of a Maine-based composting company that has contracted with the school to handle all the organic material the students have prevented from going to the landfill.
This program not only shows the students how composting is beneficial to the Earth but also that ‘”green” is economically beneficial as well. Saco Middle School’s students are only part of the movement across Maine to decrease solid waste streams through removal of organic content. Many local businesses, municipalities and institutions such as hospitals are working to ensure that one person’s trash is everyone’s treasure.