Last Tuesday and Wednesday (6/16-6/17) solid waste employees from as far away as Malta met in Missoula to learn more about compost through a course organized by the Montana Department of Environmental Quality. Participants had the opportunity to discuss common challenges, unique solutions, and present questions to world-renown expert Jean Bonhotal, Director of the Cornell Solid Waste Management Institute in Ithaca, NY. With tours of EKO Compost and the Montana Department of Transportation’s roadkill compost site, this course covered basic through advanced concepts. Tuesday evening featured a bonus free backyard composting workshop during which compost bins were given out to interested individuals. I learned tons about feedstocks, pathogens, temperatures, nutrients, leachate, etc. and I couldn’t wait to return home and make some changes to my own garden compost!
-Rob Pudner, Recycling Educator