The Village of Oak Park | 123 Madison St.  Oak Park, IL 60302 | village@oak-park.us

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Incentive offered to join composting program

May 1, 2018 - Oak Parkers interested in reducing the amount of organic material sent to landfills can sign up for the Village's composting program and receive a discount in the process.

Residents who join the CompostAble program for the first time will get three months free this year if they sign up for 12 months of continuous service, a savings of $44.56.

Close to 1,500 households are already participating in the CompostAble program, which is available to single-family and five-flat households using Village refuse and recycling services. The program is offered on a voluntary, subscription basis.

Sign up for the composting program online at www.oak-park.us/compost.

The subscription cost is $14.85 per month, which is about the cost of one yard waste sticker and one yard waste bag per week. Residents who maintain backyard compost piles or who mulch grass clippings may wish to investigate sharing organics carts and costs with neighbors.

Residents who participate in the program receive a 96-gallon cart and an under-sink collection bucket and a box of compostable bags for food scraps. Organics carts are collected on regular refuse collection days from April through November. During the winter the carts are emptied bi-weekly on Wednesdays at a discounted rate.

Yard waste such as grass clippings, garden vegetation, leaves and brush can all be discarded through the CompostAble program. Other acceptable materials include food scraps such as fruits, vegetables, coffee grounds, table scraps, pasta, meats, breads and dairy products. Unsoiled or food-soiled paper products such as paper towels, pizza boxes, napkins and newspaper are also accepted.

Examples of material that cannot be collected through the program include pet waste, sanitary products, diapers and plastic packaging and bags. 

A one-page flyer with information about the composting program, including a list of acceptable items, can be downloaded by clicking here.

Composting is the process of organic waste decomposing into humus, a natural fertilizer. When the composting process is complete, the resulting material looks like deep rich soil and smells sweet.

A pile of compost from the Village's off-site food scrap composting facility is made available to program participants during the spring and summer at a centralized location. Information about compost availability is shared through periodic email updates from the Village and by calling 708.358.5700 or emailing compostable@oak-park.us.

Benefits of composting include diverting material from landfills and creating a valuable end product. Since yard waste and food scraps are high emitters of methane, a gas more potent than carbon dioxide, composting these materials reduces air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. 

For more information about the CompostAble program, call 708.358.5700 or email compostable@oak-park.us.