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Sanitation announces Fall 2006 compost giveback events, compost bin sales, and coupons for free paper leaf bags

October 13,2006 | Vito A. Turso/Matthew LiPani (646) 885-5020

Press Release # 06-49, FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The Department of Sanitation announced today the start of its Fall 2006 Compost Givebacks, where residents can come and pick up compost derived from last year’s leaf collection.  City residents only -- not businesses -- can receive unlimited amounts of free, high-quality compost at designated compost sites and should bring their own shovels and sturdy containers to take away as much compost as they can.

“Compost, similar to potting soil, is the pinnacle of recycling,” said Sanitation Commissioner John J. Doherty.  “Compost is a nutrient dense material that is great for backyard gardens and front lawns, which greatly reduces the need for chemical fertilizers or watering.”

Compost givebacks will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays, at the following locations:

Soundview Composting Site: Bronx
Saturday, October 14, at the end of Randall Avenue, near the intersection with Metcalf Avenue, close to the Bruckner Expressway.

Fresh Kills Composting Site: Staten Island
Monday through Saturday, October 16 through 21, at 310 West Service Road, near exit 7 of Rt. 440.

Spring Creek Composting Site: Brooklyn/Queens border
Monday through Saturday, October 23 through 28 and October 30 through November 4, on Flatlands Avenue, near the intersection with Fountain Ave, close to the Belt Parkway.

The Department will also be selling discounted compost bins, usually costing $70, for $20 on select days at the compost givebacks to encourage residents to make their own compost at home. Discounted bins are also sold at the Botanic Gardens, when they are available.

Last month, the Department sent residents within the city’s 37 leaf collection districts a mailer that contained a coupon to receive five free paper leaf bags to set out their fall leaves for DSNY collection starting in November.  These coupons can be redeemed at the compost giveback events. The city’s four botanical gardens will also redeem coupons for free sample leaf bags in October and November.

Why Residents Should Brown Bag Their Leaves

Paper bags decompose along with the leaves, so the compost is much cleaner and higher quality. The compost that is produced from New Yorkers’ leaves is returned to residents and community gardens through the Department’s compost givebacks held every spring and fall.

New regulations will take effect next year, requiring residents and institutions to set out leaves in large paper leaf bags, or loose in 20- to 32-gallon containers. This year, the Department is undertaking efforts to help residents get accustomed to using the large paper leaf bags.