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Global Ideas

Composting for a cause

South Africa is converting waste into compost - a concept which holds huge benefits for the climate.

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Turning waste into compost helps protect the climate

Project type: Adaptation and implementation, slashing methane gas emissions
Project size: one composting facility so far, further facilities planed
CO2 reduction: saving the equivalent of 60,000 tons of CO2 a year
Prizes: The composting facility was recognized as a model climate project by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and made it to the final round of the Climate Change Leadership Awards of 2010

For years, green waste such as shrubs, cuttings and plant remains from parks, fields and football stadiums have ended up on massive trash heaps in South Africa’s biggest cities. But a local company has found an innovative way to deal with the problem. It converts the piles of garbage into microbiological compost. That’s good news for landowners, who can use the cheaper and more sustainable compost as fertilizer on their fields. And most importantly, composting carries significant benefits for the climate. Decaying trash releases massive amounts of methane gas into the atmosphere, a pollutant that is 20 times more harmful for our environment than carbon dioxide.

A film by Mabel Gundlach

Watch video 02:54

Turning waste into compost in South Africa

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