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Official Agendas Available, Fourth National Cultivating Community Composting Forum

Date: 13 Jan 2017 | posted in: Composting, waste - composting, Waste to Wealth | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

placeholderIn collaboration with the US Composting Council (USCC) and BioCycle, the Institute for Local Self-Reliance is releasing the agenda for the Fourth National Cultivating Community Composting Forum from January 23rd-24th to be held in conjunction with the USCC’s International Conference and Trade Show, COMPOST2017, in Los Angeles.

These events will bring together composters to network, share best practices, and build support for community-scale composting systems and enterprises. The Cultivating Community Composting Forum 2017 is the fourth national forum sponsored by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance and BioCycle.

Thank you to our sponsors!


Best Practices in Community Composting Workshop Agenda

Monday, January 23rd, 2017 Los Angeles, California

8:30AM to 4:30pm

Agenda available here for download


Welcome & Who’s Here



Part 1: Key Ingredients of Community Composting

  • David Paull, Compostwheels, Atlanta
  • Dustin Fedako, Compost Pedallers, Austin
  • Guy Schaffer, BK ROT, New York City



Part 2: Small-Scale Composting Systems/Processing BMPs

Moderator: Brenda Platt, Institute for Local Self-Reliance







Part 3: Hauling, Bike, & Other Logistics

Moderator: Dan Matsch, Eco-Cycle, Boulder


  • Composting Logistics: Material, information, and Money, Michael Robinson, Rust Belt Riders, Cleveland
  • Hauling Logistics & Service Design, Justin Senkbell, CompostNow, Raleigh
  • The Unique Challenges and Opportunities of Bike Hauling, Kathryn Nigro, Tilthy Rich, Raleigh



Lunch & Informal Breakouts

At restaurants outside of the hotel – on your own.

Breakout Topics:

  • Topic 1: BMPs at compost sites
  • Topic 2: Bike powered operators
  • Topic 3: Outreach & marketing
  • Topic 4: Business & financing



Part 4: The Business of Community Composting

Moderator: Kyle Isaacksen, Reno Rot Riders, Reno


  • Dustin Fedako, Compost Pedallers, Austin
  • Jennifer Mastalerz, Philly Compost, Philadelphia
  • Mary Ryther, Compost With Me, Falmouth [Massachusetts]



Part 5: Community Engagement & Building Community Power via Community Composting

Moderator: Linda Bilsens, Institute for Local Self-Reliance Neighborhood Soil Rebuilders, Washington D.C.




Part 6: Breakout Discussions

Topics TBD: BMPs, hauling logistics, business plans/financial viability, outreach & marketing, policy agenda, volunteer management, community engagement/community empowerment, school composting, etc.)



Report Back from Breakouts, Closing, & Next Steps

Agenda available here for download

4th National Cultivating Community Composting Forum


Tuesday, January 24th, 2017 Los Angeles, California

Agenda available here for download


Nora Goldstein, BioCycle, @BioCycleMag

Brenda Platt, Institute for Local Self-Reliance, @ILSR


Part 1: Cultivating Community Composting Forum


Community Composting: Distributed, Diverse, and Growing

Welcome from Institute for Local Self-Reliance and BioCycle
Overview & Introduction to Community Composting (interactive polling)

Forum Keynote: Empowering Neighborhoods Through Compost, Michael Martinez, LA Compost

Panel: Community Composters Drive Local Programs

This panel will showcase how community composters bring public attention to composting and the potential partnerships. Commercial scale composters and haulers – along with local government – will learn the benefit of these programs and how to support/partner with community-based efforts.


  • Sustaining Business through Collaboration, Philadelphia. Jennifer Mastalerz, Philly Compost and Tim Bennett, Bennet Compost, Philadelphia.
  • Connecting Composting to Creating Jobs in Marginalized Communities, Atlanta. David Paull, Compost Wheels, Atlanta.
  • Bike-Powered Collection Spurs Community Participation, Austin. Dustin Fedako, Compost Pedallers, Austin.



Opening Plenary – Welcome to Compost2017



Lunch in the Exhibit Hall Sponsored by Exhibitors



Part 2: Cultivating Community Composting Forum

Panel Discussion: Supporting a Distributed Composting Infrastructure – Dollars and Rules

This panel will address the importance of local and state financing and policies to the development of a diverse and distributed composting infrastructure that includes community scale operations. How can state agencies such as CalRecycle’s create funding incentives to support community composters? How can local government revisit districting rules to allow for community composters to compete? What local governments are already financing and supporting community scale composting?

Moderator: Brenda Platt, Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Washington D.C.


Closing Remarks



ReFed’s Roadmap Hits the Road: Building Processing Capacity at the Right Scale

Discussion Panel includes:

  • Brenda Platt, Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Washington D.C.

Agenda available here for download


Community composting is the radical idea that compost is used within the same community where the material is generated and that the community participates in some way. Community composters keep the feedstocks, process and product as local as possible while engaging the community through participation and education. Projects range from urban to rural and include small enterprises, demonstration/training sites, schools, universities, pedal-powered collection systems, worker-owned cooperatives, community gardens and farms.

For more information on community composting, download our report:
Growing Local Fertility: A Guide to Community Composting

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Nick Stumo-Langer

Nick Stumo-Langer was Communications Manager at ILSR working for all five initiatives. He ran ILSR's Facebook and Twitter profiles and builds relationships with reporters. He is an alumnus of St. Olaf College and animated by the concerns of monopoly power across our economy.