Why we should compost, in short:
- lower city expenses by hauling less to landfills (thereby paying less in tipping fees)
- reduce citizens' fees by sending less material to landfills
- demonstrate a commitment to environmental stewardship
- increase the soil health of Troy's land and future food production sites
- attract residents through healthy, state-of-the-art practices

At the November 1st, 2012, the City Council committed to a Climate Smart Communities Pledge, in which they set as a primary goal to:
"Expand the “reduce, reuse and recycle” approach to waste management in local government operations and in the whole community. Reduce the amount of solid waste generated— promote BACKYARD and CITYWIDE composting initiatives, implement volume-based pricing and educate residents on how to prevent waste. Promote reuse by organizing community-wide yard sales, and providing a space for drop-off or trade of reusable goods. Provide recycling receptacles in local government buildings and outdoor spaces, require duplex printing in government offices, compost food scraps and green waste, and adopt a comprehensive green purchasing program."

For 2013, the City of Troy has budgeted 1,285,000 towards Refuse Tipping Fees.

Food waste is any food substance, raw or cooked, which is discarded, or intended or required to be discarded. Food wastes are the organic residues generated by the handling, storage, sale, preparation, cooking, and serving of foods.
The amount of food wasted in the United States is staggering. In 2010, more than 34 million tons of food waste was generated, more than any other material category but paper. Food waste accounted for almost 14 percent of the total municipal solid waste stream, less than three percent of which was recovered and recycled in 2010. The rest —33 million tons— was thrown away, making food waste the single largest component of MSW reaching landfills and incinerators.external image index_pie_chrt_900px.jpg

Composting is the most prevalent method of recovering organic materials for value-added end use. However, the benefits do not stop there. Other benefits include, but not limited to:
  • Composting reduces greenhouse gases by preventing methane generation in landfills, storing carbon in the compost product, reducing energy use for water pumping, substituting for energy-intensive chemical fertilizers and pesticides, improving the soil’s ability to store carbon, and improving plant growth and thus carbon sequestration. This is an important aid to combating climate change.

  • Compost encourages the production of beneficial microorganisms, which break down organic matter to create a rich nutrient-filled material called humus.
  • Compost is a value-added product with many markets, including land reclamation, silviculture, horticulture, landscaping, and soil erosion control.
  • Compost increases the nutrient content in soils.
  • Compost helps soils retain moisture.
  • Compost reduces the need for chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and fungicides.
  • Compost suppresses plant diseases and pests.
  • Compost promotes higher yields of agricultural crops.
  • Compost helps regenerate poor soils.
  • Compost has the ability to clean up (remediate) contaminated soil.
  • Compost can help prevent pollution and manage erosion problems.
  • Composting extends municipal landfill life by diverting organic materials from landfills.
  • Composting sustains at least four times more jobs than landfill or incinerator disposal on a per-ton basis.
  • Composting is a proven technology.
  • Composting is far cheaper than waste incineration
( http://www.ilsr.org/benefits-of-composting)
Backyard composting saves because it:
c Reduces collection, transfer, and centralized processing
c Lowers residential trash bills (where unit costing exists)
c Creates jobs (home composting program coordination and
c Reduces air and water pollution
c Reduces the need to purchase fertilizers and pesticides
Backyard composting has other benefits, such as improving
soil health and fertility, providing a hands-on method of science
education (especially worm composting), reducing traffic congestion
(less hauling of materials), increasing exercise and relaxation,
and increasing a sense of personal responsibility and personal
and community pride.
Source: The Composting Council. National Backyard Composting Program Cost-
Benefit Analysis of Home Composting Programs in the United States. 1996.