Pros and Cons of Composting

Composting is essentially the recycling and decomposition of organic matter such as food scraps, plant trimmings, leaves, grass, animal manure, and municipal solid waste into a final product called humus, which is then used to correct nutrient imbalances in the soil. Bacteria, fungi, and other microorganism play a pivotal role in compositing as they help break down the organic matter.

Compositing is an effective method of enriching the soil with nutrients provide and in turn provides nutrients to animals, microorganisms as well as plants. The following are some pros and cons of composting that you need to take into account before you decide to do composting:

Pros

Encourages recycling

Compositing is a good way of recycling a number of items that will otherwise increase pollution and end up in landfill sites. From tea bags, expired food products, towels to agricultural and solid animal waste, all can be composted by anyone. Composting also helps conserve natural resources and that is all the more reason to do composting.

It can be used as a method to encourage people around the globe to dispose of their own waste themselves in a responsible manner. Wouldn’t that be just great?

Beneficial to soil

Composting improves the physical, chemical, and biological properties of the soil. It improves the soil structure by reducing the soil bulk density and helping the soil particles bind together. It protects the soil from erosion, improves soil aeration, enhances its water-holding capacity, and helps provide moderate temperature to the soil. Moreover, it provides growth substances, builds up nutrients and protects the soil from changes to its optimum condition. It even helps in controlling certain plant diseases and kills weeds.

Remedy for pollution

Composting decomposes volatile organic compounds, degrades preservatives, hydrocarbons, pesticides, as well as petroleum products and helps lower the production of methane along with leachate which both causes severe environmental degradation. If composting is done correctly then it can help minimize environmental pollution by lowering environmental emission, absorbing odors, and stopping the pollution of waterways, in turn, improving the quality of the groundwater.

Economically beneficial

Composting costs next to nothing. Some people might need a storage bin or materials to make a place for the compost to pile up but other than that, there are no expenses. All you need is a suitable place and that’s it. Other than this, composting helps save money that would otherwise be spent on environmental conservation, purchase of fertilizers as well as pesticides and even water for agricultural purposes.

Cons

Environmental concerns

Since people generally do composting on their own, it’s easy to make a mistake. If there are too much green plant matter, or if it’s not aerated enough, or if there’s too much moisture, an odor can develop and become an issue for any neighbors living close by. Additionally, putting oils, fats, or meat in the compost can attract unwanted wildlife to your property such as foxes, raccoons, cats, dogs, coyotes, and even bears.

Composting, when not done properly, can attract pests, pathogens, flies, and transmit diseases.

Rental issues

Sources from Homenova say that some landlords don’t allow their tenants to do composting on their property because of the risk of bad smells and compost leakage.

Effort and time

To do composting the right way is a time commitment. When done right, it’s great for the environment as it reduces the amount of waste going to landfills, and it’s a cost effective way to acquire nutrient rich soil. It will take some effort and know how to maintain, but it can be worth it especially if you’re gardening or farming.