Letter: Why we compost — please join us

With nearby wildfires, drought conditions, severe erosion and floods at burn scars, it is clear to us that we are seeing the effects of climate change. It is easy to feel overwhelmed and powerless, but if each of us does our part to reduce our carbon footprints, we will begin to make a collective impact.

Food waste is a major contributor to climate change, and it’s something that we all encounter on a daily basis. Preventing food from being wasted and composting organics that do become waste, as opposed to sending them to a landfill, is one way to reduce our contribution to climate change. When organic matter ends up in landfills, it decomposes in the absence of oxygen and produces methane, a highly potent greenhouse gas with a global warming potential that is as much as 34 times more problematic than carbon dioxide.

With 100 members in its first year, the Yampa Valley’s Feed For Seed composting program, run by Innovative Regeneration Colorado, diverted 80 tons of food waste from the landfill and has prevented over 344 tons of CO2 emissions from being released into the atmosphere. That’s equivalent to removing 73 passenger vehicles from the road for a year or conserving 38.712 gallons of gasoline.

We have diverted that much food waste primarily using equipment that is made from recycled and repurposed materials. Making a difference does not always require a big investment. It can be done with dedication, determination and ingenuity from a committed community.

The most often asked questions people have about Steamboat’s Feed For Seed program is why the $25 monthly fee. It’s hard to justify if your household is already paying for garbage pickup. We get it. Expenses behind the program include vehicles, equipment, fuel, facility rent, permitting, accounting services, taxes, insurance and, of course, labor.

Consider it an investment in maintaining the health of our natural environment in the Yampa Valley for ourselves and future generations. We invite all of Steamboat to join us. You too can sign up for neighborhood compost pick up at


Melanie and Jim Dailey

Charene and Rex Jones

Amy and Larry Jenkins

Jane McComb

Butch and Paige Boucher

Maia Stone

Deborah Rose

Gail Garey

Meissner family

Stephanie Thompson

Kuelthau family

Ann Heckbert

Bill and Linda Scholle

Suzy Sayle

Garner Family

Jia and Pat Hagan

Tim and Marchele McCarthy

Erica Jacobs and Adam Frank

Kim and Dan Lemmer

Pam Mischell

Pam and Bob Pole

Beth Banning

Jill Bergman, Tessa and Matt Irvin

Margaret Kamins

Kelly Martin and Victor Puleo

Jean Clougherty

Nate and Cari Ann Bird

Lyman family

Doug and Cathy Starkey

Mark Berkley

Winn and Scott Cowman

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Steamboat and Routt County make the Steamboat Pilot & Today’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.