compost.jpgVolunteers for the city’s recycling and urban composting program gave out more than 18 truckloads of compost today to about 4,000 San Francisco residents, according to representatives for the city.

Recology hosted the Great Compost Giveaway to reward residents for composting and let them “reap what they sow” by offering five-gallon allotments of planting mix for personal gardens and potted plants.

“San Franciscans are truly great recyclers and composters,” Recology president and CEO Mike Sangiacomo said. “Together we have achieved the highest landfill diversion rate in the nation.”

The city has a 77 percent waste diversion rate and generates 95,000 cubic yards of compost annually, according to officials.

Recology has collected more than 907,000 tons of food scraps and plants since the city’s composting program began in 1996, and more than 354,000 metric tons of methane and carbon have been avoided or sequestered since then.

The greenhouse gas benefit is the same as offsetting emissions for every car driving over the Bay Bridge for more than two years, according to the city.

Compost receivers showed up at four sites today with buckets, boxes and wheelbarrows to collect the nutrient-rich fertilizer.

The compost is used at more than 200 farms and vineyards throughout the Bay Area, and leftovers were given to community gardens.

Compost was available at Alemany Farm, the Hayes Valley Farm, McLaren Park, and the Ocean Beach parking lot at Golden Gate Park.

The Great Compost Giveaway was co-sponsored by the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department, Department of Public Works, and Department of the Environment.

Janna Brancolini, Bay City News

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