Celebrating the recycling of organics during ICAW

From May 3 to 9, leading compost networks from around the world will unite during international compost awareness week (ICAW).

The organizations are pioneering awareness on the importance of organics recycling and the use of compost to help regenerate the health of soils and soften the impact of human activity on our planet.

ICAW is celebrating 25 years and is the largest and most comprehensive education initiative of the compost industry.

Centre for Organic Research & Education (CORE), a not-for-profit charity has been supporting the international campaign in Australia for the past 15 years.

CORE Chairman, Eric Love, said recent weather catastrophes have given us a wake-up call to be more proactive about building our resilience to changes in our climate conditions, irrespective of the differing views on the causes.

“Having personally experienced the impacts of drought, fires, dust storms, floods, ultra-high temperatures and severe winds, has strengthened my resolve to support the proliferation of climate responsive measures to improve livability in our communities,” said Mr. Love.

AORA is an Australian partner involved in the international initiative, and is encouraging Australians to add compost to soil to improve its organic matter content, of fundamental importance to soil health and productivity.

The use of landfill space and incineration can be reduced by at least one-third when organics are recycled.

“Focused attention on recycling organic residuals is key to achieving high waste diversion rates,” AORA said in a statement.

“Compost offers a significant answer to climate change mitigation.”

Soil health and productivity is dependent on organic matter in the form of compost or humus to provide the sustenance for the biological diversity in the soil.

“Plants depend on this to convert materials into plant-available nutrients and to keep the soil well-aerated. Additional benefits include the reduced need for pesticide usage to ward off soil-borne and other plant diseases,” AORA said in a statement.

To promote the benefits of compost and organics recycling, the 2020 campaign for international compost awareness week is “soil loves compost” and “for the love of the earth”.

Traditionally, throughout the week of ICAW, community and business events and programs are held to encourage and celebrate the recycling of organics.

This year, reflective of the need for social distancing, people will be promoting ICAW through social media, emails, online workshops, and alternative ways to reach out to the public.

Executive Officer of Grampians Central West Waste & Resources Recovery Group (GCWWRRG), La Vergne Lehmann said encouraging residents in Australian communities to compost more at home and use compost in their own gardens is the best outcome for dealing with organic waste.

“Our support for ICAW is all about engaging our communities to do just that,” Ms Lehmann said.

ICAW international partners include the European Compost Network, The Compost Council of Canada, Composting Council Research & Education Foundation, Italian Composting and Biogas Association, Garden Organic UK and Composting & Anaerobic Digestion Association of Ireland.

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