How To Make a DIY Compost | The Benefits of Composting Food Waste
If it wasn’t clear by now, we’re pretty passionate about sustainability here at GoGet. That’s why we’re always looking for ways to reduce our carbon footprint and make it easy for our community to do the same. We love a good sustainability hack, so as for our next mission? How to make a DIY compost!
Approximately 20 million tonnes of waste are sent to landfill every year in Australia, representing around 40% of our total waste generation. With the problem being so huge, you may wonder how a little thing like making a DIY compost at home can help to reduce one of our country’s biggest problems? Well, not only is the physical space landfill is taking up a problem, the pollution it creates in our environments, and more specifically, the methane gas it releases as food waste decomposes, is what makes it a serious issue.
Methane is a potent greenhouse gas, more detrimental than CO2, and while many facilities have technology in place to control the release of methane gas, working to eliminate it altogether is a far more sustainable strategy. And DIY composting does just that!
What are the benefits of composting?
- It reduces the amount of waste your household sends to landfill. It’s estimated that 35% of the average household bin is food waste.
- It creates an organic fertiliser for your gardens reducing the need for harmful chemical fertilisers.
- It reduces the amount of methane gases produced in landfill areas.
How to build a DIY compost
Composting at home is actually easier than you may think. If you have a garden area, all you need is a dry and shady space near a water source to build your compost or to place a compost bin, and a few simply tips to get started.
All composting requires three basic things: Brown waste such as dead leaves, branches and twigs, Green waste including grass clippings, vegetable waste, fruit scraps, coffee grounds and water. An equal ratio of brown to green waste will make your DIY project as successful as possible.
Add your brown and green materials to your designated compost area or bin as they’re collected making sure to cut up or shred any larger pieces. Whenever dry material is added, make sure you add water to help it break down.
You’ll know your compost is ready to be used on your gardens when the soil at the bottom is dark and moist with no chunks of waste in it. This can take 2-12months after starting your compost.
If you’re short on outdoor space and want to know how to build an indoor compost, you can buy convenient composting bins from your local hardware store and set them up on your balcony or terrace. You can even find one small enough bins to live in the kitchen. Some larger compost bins are bulky and hard to transport so we recommend hiring a van to help you get the job done.
What can be composted?
The list of items you can put in your DIY compost and save from landfill include:
– Fruits and vegetables
– coffee grounds and filters,
– tea bags, nut shells,
– shredded newspaper,
– cardboard and paper,
– yard trimmings and grass clippings,
– hay and straw,
– sawdust and wood chips,
– cotton and wool rags,
– dryer and vacuum cleaner lint,
– hair and fur,
– fireplace ashes.
For more sustainability tips, keep an eye on our blog page.