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City of Knoxville launches new compost project

Knoxville residents will be able to drop off acceptable scraps at the City's Recycling Center in the Old City.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Knoxville residents and downtown restaurants can now drop off their food scraps to be composted through the Knoxville Compost Pilot Project.

“This project responds to demands in our community to limit the amount of waste sent to our landfills and reduce our greenhouse gas emissions,” says City of Knoxville Waste and Resources Manager, Patience Melnik. “Not all residents want to—or are able to—maintain their own backyard compost. But by participating in the Knoxville Compost Pilot Project, they can keep food scraps out of the landfill while repurposing that material into healthy soil to grow local produce.”

The project’s food-scrap collection site is located at the City's Recycling Center in the Old City at 227 Willow Avenue.

These are the only items currently accepted in the compost project:

• Fruits

• Vegetables

• Coffee Grounds

• Paper Coffee Filters

• Eggshells

• Nut Shells

To access the compost bins, participants must take a quiz to identify the dos and don’ts of composting. Completing the quiz will give the user the combination of the bins’ locks. Participants can then dump acceptable scraps and lock the bins when they are done.

Full bins of compostable items will be delivered to nonprofit project partner Battlefield Farm. There, the food scraps will break down in a composter designed and built by City Possum Farm with funding from the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation. After several months, the finished compost will provide important nutrients to the soil.

For more information, visit you can visit the City of Knoxville's website here.

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