The goal of International Compost Awareness Week (1 May to 7 May) is to increase awareness about the importance of organic waste composting and its benefits. The theme for #CompostWeek 2022 is ‘Recipe for Regeneration’.
What does ‘Recipe for Regeneration’ mean?
The theme draws on the regenerative agriculture movement which demonstrates how organic waste composting is fundamental to:
- improving soil health,
- increasing food nutrition and consequently improving food security,
- returning carbon to the soil, acting as a carbon sink, and thereby mitigating climate change,
Organic waste is the main fraction of the solid waste produced in urban settlements, and it is primarily disposed of at landfill sites. The result is the generation of an excessive amount of leachate and greenhouse gas emissions at landfill sites. Added to this is the mounting deficit of landfill airspace in South Africa. To address these concerns, South Africa’s National Waste Management Strategy (2020) recognises that composting is the most effective method for the diversion of organic waste from landfill sites.
Legislation applicable to Composting Facilities
The promulgation of the National Norms and Standards for Organic Waste Composting in June 2021 means that a waste management license in terms of the National Environmental Management: Waste Act (2008) is no longer required for organic waste composting facilities. To ensure that best practice is always followed, the Norms and Standards require that composting facilities with the capacity to process more than 10 tonnes of organic waste per day be registered with the provincial environmental management authority.
How can SES help?
If you operate a composting facility or propose to develop a composting facility that will process more than 10 tonnes of organic waste daily, SES can assist with compiling the relevant documentation for the applicable registration in terms of the National Norms and Standards for Organic Waste Composting.
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