When purchasing compost, do you ever think about whether it’s peat or peat-free compost? Peat is a finite resource and our earth and wildlife depend on it. We’re extracting peat at the rate of 220 times faster than it takes for it to form. It Forms at 1mm per year, and we’re extracting 22cm per year. If peat extraction continues at this rate, then we’ll soon have no peatland left. Peat bogs help keep emissions from the atmosphere, provide a habitat for rare plants, and are a lifeline for our wildlife.
As I’ve written before:
While many people compost to help their gardens thrive, composting minimizes the amount of waste that ends up in landfills. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), we dispose of more than 250 million tons of trash a year. Of those, only 34.1 percent of it was recycled or composted, a figure which could be much higher if we make an effort to lessen the burden on landfills
Landfills Are Filling Up
The number of usable landfills in the United States has sharply declined. Especially in the past few decades. In a 2005 report on municipal solid waste generation, the EPA noted that there were 7,924 landfills in 1988. However, only 1,654 in 2005. One of the most-notable landfill closures was Fresh Kills in New York. Once the world’s largest landfill, it was closed in 2001. That’s after being filled with 53 years worth of garbage from the largest U.S. city, according to the Staten Island Advance.
So, therefore, the infographic below highlights the effects of peat extraction. It also details how we can do our bit all by considering alternative methods.
The infographic comes from compost specialists Compost Direct, suppliers of a wide range of peat-free solutions, including mulch and soil conditioner.