Note: This story appears in the Sunday, May 6 newspaper on Page A3.
The city of Athens has released sign-up dates for its compost curbside pick-up pilot project.
As previously reported by The Messenger, the pilot program will recruit between 200 and 300 households in Athens to participate in the six-month-long project, with about 50-75 participating households split between each of the city’s four wards.
Online sign-up forms will be available on May 7 on the city website’s Garbage & Recycling page. Participants must be residents who live within the city limits of Athens in either single-family dwellings or apartment buildings with four or fewer units.
Participation will be free to residents but sign-ups are only available on a first-come, first-serve basis.
The first 20 people to sign up will also get a free compost container for their kitchen countertop, according to Rural Action Zero Waste Manager Andrea Reany.
The sign-up form will remain open until mid-June or until all spots are filled.
The program is an effort to reduce the amount of material households send to the landfill. Participating households will receive a 5-gallon bucket with a lid and handle. A label outlining what are acceptable and unacceptable materials will be on the lids.
Athens-Hocking Recycling Center, the city’s contracted residential trash and recycling pick-up, will provide the compost pick-up service for the pilot. Rural Action, which is administering the pilot registration, will educate participants on proper composting practices and will evaluate the pilot’s functionality.
The program is set to begin in early August and wrap up in February. From there, surveys of the pilot will be collected from participants to prepare for a potential full-fledged program.
The Messenger previously reported a citywide compost pick-up program could be ready by April 2020 if the city chooses to adopt it.