At the end of December 2012, pilot participants received a green organics cart to use for collecting their organic materials. Participants also received a food scrap collector to use indoors to gather leftovers before placing them in the green cart.
The materials collected at the curb are turned into nutrient-rich compost, mulch and garden soils specifically designed for Central Texas.
The Curbside Organics Collection Pilot is an expansion of the department's current weekly curbside yard trimmings collection. Since 1989, Austin Resource Recovery has partnered with Austin Water Utility to compost yard trimmings collected at the curb into a nutrient-rich soil conditioner known as Dillo DirtTM. The Curbside Organics Collection Pilot is the department's next step toward collecting additional organic materials at the curb.
Why is the City conducting this pilot?
Nearly half of the materials that end up in landfills can be composted!
Collecting additional organic materials at the curb will greater amounts of valuable materials out of our landfills reduce harmful greenhouse gases and help Austin get closer to Zero Waste by 2040.
What is the goal of this pilot?
Over the course of this one-year pilot, we will gather and analyze data, evaluate the efficiency of our collection routes and refine our curbside organics collection services.
When does this pilot end?
The pilot will officially end in December 2013. However, curbside organics collection will remain a permanent weekly collection service for all pilot households going forward. In January 2014, Austin Resource Recovery will expand the Curbside Organics Collection Program to include more households.
What are the benefits of this pilot?
In addition to reducing the amount of trash going to our landfills and helping Austin reach Zero Waste, the Curbside Organics Collection Pilot may help residents save money on their utility bill. After putting food scraps and food-soiled paper in their green cart, participants likely will have less trash to throw away each week. This may allow them to downsize to a smaller, less expensive trash cart. We offer four trash cart sizes – the smaller the cart, the less it costs.