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    Vermont Bans Plastic Bags, Mandates Composting Instead of Throwing Out Food Scraps

    Vermont Bans Plastic Bags, Mandates Composting Instead of Throwing Out Food Scraps

    You will only get a plastic straw if you ask for it, plastic stirrers will be ” of a different material”

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    Back in 2012, Vermont passed a law that banned people from throwing out food scraps, forcing people to throw them in the compost.

    That law went into effect on July 1 along with a statewide ban on plastic bags.

    I use the compost and I only put in fruit, veggies, and eggshells. Vermont is requiring people to also throw in coffee grounds and tea bags along with “plate scraps:”

    • Bread
    • Meat
    • Dairy
    • Sweets
    • Sauces
    • Expired Food

    From The Takeout:

    The goal is to redirect 50% of the waste that would have, in the past, gone to landfills. So now instead of dumping all their pits, rinds, scraps, bones, coffee grounds, and unwanted leftovers into the garbage, Vermont residents will put it all in the composting bin. “If it was once part of something alive, like a plant or animal,” the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation advises on its website, “it does not belong in the landfill.” The state set aside nearly $1 million for grants for composting agencies to buy new equipment and expand their curbside pickup and dropoff services. Even the most isolated Vermonter has a composting facility within 10 miles.

    Although there’s a policy in place that requires Vermont officials to go through trash every five years to determine what everybody’s tossing (what a great job!), nobody will be digging through anyone’s individual garbage bin. “Instead,” Fast Company reports, “officials are asking for voluntary compliance—and they expect to get it, based on how seriously Vermonters take their environmentalism.”

    People do not have to compost in their backyard. They can drop off food scraps or facilities or “ask their trash hauler if they provide food scrap collection.”

    The Vermont Retail & Grocers Association wanted to postpone the plastic bag ban because of the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic. Vermont hates plastic in general:

    But the Vermont Health Department gave reusable bags the OK and lawmakers stuck with the original date.

    Starting Wednesday, food and service establishments will no longer be giving out plastic carryout bags. Exceptions include loose items in a store like meat, flowers or nuts and coffee.

    Shoppers will have to bring a reusable bag or pay 10 cents for a paper bag.

    The law goes beyond the checkout line. Plastic straws will now be by request, plastic stirrers will be replaced with a stirrer of a different material and stores will no longer be offering polystyrene as an option for egg cartons or trays.

    [Featured image via YouTube]

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    Comments



     
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    The Friendly Grizzly | July 11, 2020 at 4:32 pm

    Using the mindset of a politician, I see HUGE opportunities for requiring building permits, and annual fees on composting bins. Also, standards that require buying prefabricated bins with specs met only by manufacturers that offer kickbacks.

    I almost forgot: a surtax on items of, pertaining to, or for, composting.


     
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    hopeful | July 11, 2020 at 4:50 pm

    Whatever happened to live free or die?


     
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    Demoncrats | July 11, 2020 at 8:44 pm

    The suburbs and especially apartments in Burlington are gonna smell to high heaven!


     
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    artichoke | July 11, 2020 at 10:55 pm

    As someone who composts, I know: ONE DOES NOT COMPOST MEAT.

    Composting is easy if you have a bit of yard. Have a composting “pit” which is just an area of dirt, stick shovel into ground, push forward to create an open area, jam the waste (non-meat) into the ground with your shoe, and pull out the shovel and cover it over. Do that in the same general area for a year.

    Then move to a different area and let that one sit for a year. Part of the breakdown is done by mold, and that mold is poisonous to plants. You need a year for the mold to complete its work and die off. Then you can use that compost.

    But no meat!! Meat decomposes anaerobically, and veg. matter decomposes aerobically. Putting them together just creates a mess.


     
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    Dave Sweeny | July 12, 2020 at 1:47 pm

    Growing up in the 1940’s, we had the first compost heap in town, with a 4-inch center pipe to release heat. The compost was eventually plowed under as fertilizer for the vegetables we grew. We also had the first worm-pit. My mother was the secretary for the local Gardening club. The annual garden show was held at our house, and the number of unusual plants and flowers drew big crowds. My folks loved to garden; it was their pastime after work.
    My wife and I did the same thing in the 1990’s. We raised our children in the country on a Gentleman’s farm. But the agricultural life is not for everyone; we also need industry, advanced education and the urban communities that make industry possible.
    My wife’s family, still in Communist Cuba, is now told the same message, compost your garbage, but with the rest of the story added. Cuba is an economic disaster. The country imports 2/3’s of their food, but they’ve run out of free money from Russia and Venezuela. So, now the Cuban Peasants are also told, “Compost every scrap of organic material, then grow your own vegetables where-ever you can garden, or face starvation. They even grow vegetables indoors now, to keep people from stealing them. Lesson learned?


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