Sunday, May 2, 2010

Green Bin Awareness

My letter to the editor was published in yesterday's paper following a report that some are thinking about banning organics from landfill in the region.  It's hard to put everything in 200 words - for me anyway as some regular readers might have noticed my long- winded nature - but I think I could have been clearer yet.

I think it most important to make everyone aware that what goes in the green bin ends up sold as fertilizer, largely to be sprayed on crops.  People who complain that we can't line the bins with plastic bags completely miss this point.  Even the city encourages us to include microwave popcorn bags and Tim Hortons cups in the mix, but I don't want to be eating the plastic and teflon in those.  Dog crap is bad enough!  They heat the sludge to extreme temperatures to kill off bacteria, but there a reason spinach was on the watch list for e-coli.  E-coli hangs out in sludge, and it's not always entirely destroyed by processing.  But there's no way to get the phthalates, PBAs, and perfluorinated compounds out of the final product.  If no animal in their right mind would want to eat it, don't put it in the bin!!

So far we don't have control over that, so wash your produce well, as always, and, even better, get to know the practices of the farmers that feed you. 

And I really wonder how the city will regulate what goes in the landfill.  People still put cardboard in there even though there's been a bylaw against it for years.

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