Students rally in Annapolis for composting bill

The program diverted five tonnes of food waste from a single school from landfills over a twelve-month period.

CLARKSBURG, Md. — Spring came early for some Maryland state leaders in Annapolis last Friday as students from Montgomery and Frederick counties urged them to “go green” and support a bill on composting under study.

These students handed out hundreds of postcards of elementary school students writing about the importance of recycling, composting and a “green” future.

Maryland’s elected leaders are consider an invoice this would allow local school systems to apply for grants to start their own composting programs.

WUSA9 first met Shrusti Amula in 2019 when she was a college student. She and a group of students were instrumental in starting Montgomery County‘s first-ever food composting program at Clarksburg Elementary School in Clarksburg.

READ: Three 7th graders have started a Montgomery County school food waste recycling project. Now they could win a national award

Since then, two other schools in Montgomery County have launched their own programs. Amula, now a high school student at Richard Montgomery, joined a student-led group called the “Coalition to Re-Imagine Food Waste” that is lobbying in Annapolis.

“Composting and food waste contribute so much to global warming. People just don’t realize it,” Amula said.

At Clarksburg Elementary School alone, over a 12-month period, the composting program diverted nearly five tons of food waste from local landfills.

The Coalition to Re-Imagine Food Waste was instrumental in collecting postcards, which asked local elementary school students to write and draw messages to highlight the importance of composting and recycling.

“Postcards are a really simple and effective way to show that we really have the community on our side,” Amula said.

Global engineering firm Leidos helped fund pilot composting programs in Montgomery County, and the Montgomery County Environmental Protection Division provided green bins and compost bags.

Learn more about local recycling centers HERE.

RELATED: Bring Your Recyclables to WUSA9’s #EnvironmentMatters Recycling Day on Feb. 26

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