Thursday, October 18, 2012

More Compost Benefits - Biological and Economic

Alternative ideas about compost benefits are coming thick and fast.  Are there any more out there?

These are some additional ideas about the benefits of compost and very succinctly worded!  Remember that the previous post included those that were well recognised and testable - claims that could not be refuted easily.  There are a few that could be extended, but overall - comost has many beneficial attributes and definitely worth using or making - even at home, and it can be done in apartments too [ using bokashi, a microbial culture that aids organic breakdown].  Look it up if you have not heard of it - plenty of articles available.  Compost bins for domestic use are easy to make - and come in various options, but having a lid is usually a good idea as well, as some animals might access the compost bin.  Many are made in heavy duty plastic similar to the common mobile garbage bin.

Benefits of Compost

Enriches Soil
• Adds organic material
• Improves fertility and productivity
• Suppresses plant diseases
• Discourages insects
• Increases water retention
• Inoculates soil with beneficial microorganisms
• Reduces or eliminates fertilizer needs
• Moderates soil temperature

Prevents Pollution
• Reduces methane production in landfills
• Reduces or eliminates organic garbage
• Reduces or eliminates sewage

Fights existing Pollution
• Degrades toxic chemicals
• Binds heavy metals
• Cleans contaminated air
• Cleans stormwater runoff

Restores Land
• Aids in reforestation
• Helps restore wildlife habitats
• Helps reclaim mined lands
• Helps restore damaged wetlands
• Helps prevent erosion on flood plains

Destroys Pathogens
• Can destroy human disease organisms
• Can destroy plant pathogens
• Can destroy livestock pathogens

Saves Money
• Can be used to produce food
• Can eliminate waste disposal costs
• Reduces the need for water, fertilizers, and pesticides
• Can be sold at a profit
• Extends landfill life by diverting materials
• Is a less costly bioremediation technique

Source: U.S. EPA (October 1997). Compost-New Applications for an Age-Old Technology. EPA530-F-97-047.

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