Right now there is no policy enacted by the federal government that recognizes composting as the conservation effort it is. This means that there is no national support for composting efforts, although some states do have their own initiatives. Many cities also take part in municipal composting programs as well.
The Cultivating Organic Matter through the Promotion of Sustainable Techniques (COMPOST) Act was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-CA26). Understanding the proposed bill will be important for composters as it goes through the necessary channels to be passed.
What is the COMPOST Act?
The goal of this bill is to create financial support for composters throughout the U.S. as well as increase the infrastructure for it. According to congress.gov, its main goal is “To require the designation of composting as a conservation practice and activity, and to provide grants and loan guarantees for composting facilities and programs, and for other purposes.”
As an amendment to section 1241(j) of the Food Security Act of 1985, H. R. 4443 would define composting as a conservation practice. If it passes, the COMPOST Act would also amend section (310J) of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act to include funding for food waste composting operations. The amount would equal $200 million each year over the course of 10 years.
There are some related bills too
Congresswoman Julia Brownley introduced the Zero Food Waste Act in July of 2021 as well as the COMPOST Act. This companion legislation would provide $650 million per year from 2022 through 2030 (through the EPA) to state, municipal, and tribal governments. They must use the funds for food waste and loss measurement and planning, as well as preventative measures, food scrap recycling, and food rescue efforts.
The Climate Stewardship Act of 2021 is a complimentary bill introduced by Senator Cory Booker (D-N.J.) that includes a focus on soil health and composting. Its goal, if passed, would be to support farmers in acquiring equipment (like windrow turners) for non-chemical termination of cover plants and composting facilities on their farms.
How the COMPOST Act handles funding
This legislation is not just meant to aid commercial or municipal operations, but also smaller composters. On-farm operations and even home composters can benefit. Composting facilities that use a mixed infrastructure can also receive funding. A minimum of $50 million would go to noncentralized and non-commercial composting operations. To qualify, composting operations must have at least one trained operator that is knowledgeable of best practices.
So, what could YOU do with funding from the COMPOST Act?
If this act and its accompanying legislation pass into law, many facilities across the country could get an additional source of income. As long as your operation qualifies for funding, you can use the funds to support your efforts. This may include waste collection, compost turners, and related equipment. It will be important to keep up with this bill as time goes on.
Compost turners for sale
Compost turners are an investment in your facility, so it is important to have the right one at the right price. At SCARAB International, we offer New, Used, and Refurbished equipment, as well as Leasing Options, to make sure your composting operation has what it needs. You can reach us at (806) 883-7621 or Send Us an Email for more information.