Dog owners and their pups visiting the North End Avenue Dog Run in New York’s Battery Park City have the option of composting animal waste rather than bagging it. Launched in 2019 by the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA), the goal is twofold: get excrement out of landfills and off city streets.
Most people very likely don’t know this, but when disposing of dog-doo in a plastic bag, the poop produces the greenhouse gas methane, which feeds global warming. If left to break down on its own, it runs off into our river systems when it rains. Neither is good for the environment.
Prior to launching the program, the BPCA composted the feces separately from food and garden scraps, then tested it for safety. Once given the green light, the end product was spread around a highway median. So far, it seems to be working well enough that BPCA has plans for expanding the program.
Ryan Torres, BPCA vice president of park operations, shared that “To date, we’ve collected over 5,700 pounds of dog waste.”
Ditching Poo Bags
Not only did they recently set up more compost bins around the neighborhood, but Torres also says they are amping up their game and getting a bigger composter, giving them the ability to get even more waste off of the streets and out of parks than ever before.
The new composter, set to arrive in the spring, is said to be more efficient, too. The hope is that more people will ditch their poo bags and start composting. One dog mom, Magdalena Kusio, agrees and added, “I wish it would expand so it would be on every second corner, at least.”
Battery Park City Authority is hopeful that they will be able to compost as much as 200 pounds of animal waste per day with new composter and additional bins. They noted that “as the program becomes increasingly adopted and successful,” it will “assess where the needs are and expand drop-off locations.”
This is fantastic news. Now, if only more cities or municipalities would get on board across the nation…
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