Decomposition is built in to the design of life on our planet and has been going on since life began. It is the quintessental circular economy. Life is compost. If you don’t believe me, try stopping it. No can do.
Cryogenics is an entire field spending billions every year in an attempt to keep rich folks from becoming compost. Heh heh heh. Lucrative profession, but no can do.
If you try really really really hard, you can slow compost down. A little. In the melting Arctic ice we found a well preserved Woolly Mammoth. Wow! What we learned from that was not the secret to Cryogenics, but that climate change can happen in thirty minutes. This drove shock waves through the scientific community. Fear. Shock. Waves. Did I mention Fear?
Remember Noah’s Ark? Old Noah was warned about climate change so he warned everyone around him and started building his ark. Normal folks gave him a lot of grief but when the time came, it started raining. It took 40 days and 40 nights of rain to cover the land according to our best accounts. We have accounts of that swift change from land to water from cultures on every continent. Scary stuff, but the Woolly Mammoth is scarier.
Compost is why.
The Mammoth’s stomach was full of tender green grass that could not have been in there more than 30 minutes because decomposition was so slight. It would be impossible to put a Wooly Mammoth in your average meat locker designed to freeze meat quickly and have less than 30 minutes of digestion of fresh grass suspended in his stomach.
No storyline about how that Mammoth went from chewing fresh grass to frozen all the way through in 30 minutes or less is workable other than the climate changed from a balmy spring day to unimaginable cold instantly. The Mammoth had enough hair and fat to protect from serious cold. Not that cold that quick. That’s the scary part.
There was a movie made about that scenario called The Day After Tomorrow. Sci Fi. But the Woolly Mammoth still exists. Prep for that little number.
If Cryogenics cannot stop rich people from becoming compost and it took some sort of cataclysm to keep the Woolly Mammoth and its grass from being compost… what are the odds your backyard litter is not going to compost in short order? You cannot stop it.
Corporate America created Big Compost predicated on convincing you that turning compost into dirt is not an inevitable process that is free (to you) labor because it is done by microorganisms that make their living at it. They can do that work free to you or free to Big Compost and at cost to you. Monetizing decomposition is an amazing feat of marketing.
Being a gardener and loving to fool in the affairs of plants, I compost all the time. I compost? Hahaha. Compost happens and I use compost after the fact. I meddle in the process when I feel like meddling.
I could add some water, or not. I could add composting microorganisms or not. Hmmmm add a shovel of dirt, or wait for them to float in on dust in the air. They are on everything you compost already, all the time. They are on you. Keep moving before they take you out.
Life is compost and it enriches your soil for healthy plants and healthy food for a healthy you.
All of the monetization hype of Big Compost convinces people that composting is hard, has decreased the amount of free compost by at least 32,642,000,000 (32 trillion) pounds per year in the US alone. That is how many pounds are sold by Big Compost every year and growing. Because it is the virtuous thing to do.
We are not only buying that many pounds of compost but we now pay taxes to support local, state, and federal agencies to track and regulate and encourage over 4000 compost businesses. Boggles my mind.
Do we have a nerdy math major in the house to figure out the cost of all this free stuff now that it has been monetized?
Seattle requires separation of compostable materials out of your garbage and they charge you for picking it up every week even if you kept it for your own pile of compost. They send it for composting then charge you again for picking it up; take a shovel because that part is not included. Seattlites are right proud of that program. Math nerd, please add that in.
Is it any surprise that there are now endless books telling you how hard it is to compost? Big Books convinces you that you practically need to major in biochemistry to get a “well balanced” compost pile. Take care to check who paid for that book to be published. Millions buy these books. Add that price in, math person.
New development: Big Compost now buys toxins from Big Chem to “improve” their compost. Costs even more and is now toxic.
So, the stories are just meant to make you notice that a compost pile is nothing more than a pile that saves your materials in one place so you can control where it is placed… your garden… after the (free to you) composting takes place. No work required on your part other than hoarding it. Play with it if you will. Sort it into 3 bins, test its temperature, add special ingredients, water it, or “turn” it. All optional.
But if labor or fear of failure keeps you from composting, forget everything you have heard or read. Make a pile. On average, Americans produce 4.5 pounds of compost material a day. Spend your money on pretty baubles (or pay off that 30 year mortgage) instead of spending that money for nothing.
Makes you wonder if the Bigs are going to monetize the air we breathe. Oops, already done to our brethren in China! Dang that EPA for impeding the monetization of American air. Congress is defunding the pernicious EPA so don’t worry, we can join our brethren in China in paying for air to breathe… those who are rich enough will. Then again, TPP puts corporate profits over national sovereignty. Prepare to be fined for breathable air and drinkable water.