Earth Day composts, recycles 93 percent of waste |

Earth Day composts, recycles 93 percent of waste

Thousands of people attended last weekend’s Tahoe-Truckee Earth Day Festival. But a carefully thought-out and well executed zero-waste policy diverted 93 percent of the event’s waste to recycling and compost.

“Not quite ‘zero-waste’ but darn near!” according to a press release written by Madonna Dunbar who worked on the zero-waste committee.

More than 5,000 people came to the Village at Squaw Valley last Saturday to partake in the green celebration. And more than 20 volunteers staffed zero-waste stations that replaced garbage cans in the village. Volunteers educated attendees on where to put what out of a choice of recycling, compost and trash bins.

The zero-waste stations collected mostly mixed recyclables with 526 pounds of bottles, paper and aluminum cans, or 70 percent of the day’s 762 pounds of total waste.

Biodegradable cups, plates, utensils and food waste were among the 180 pounds of compost saved, or 23 percent of the total waste. The load of compost was transported down to Full Circle Compost in Minden, Nevada where it will be processed over the next few months and then mixed in with the soil at the Incline Village General Improvement District’s demonstration garden.

And as for dirty leftover trash, only 56 pounds were thrown away, just 7 percent of the day’s total waste.

Tahoe City’s Bryce Rayney won the day’s “Guess the Waste Weight” Contest with a guess of 742 total pounds of collected materials. Rayney received a case of blue recycling bags for his prize.

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