Happy Earth Day - Experimenting with Compostables

Scroll down for updates on the progress.....

Here we are Earth Day 2010 - did you know that we've been celebrating Earth Day for 40 years? Yep, April 22, 1970 was the first "official" Earth Day, although it was in the works since 1962! Although sometimes things seem grim on the environmental front, it is good to know that people are becoming more and more environmentally aware. Take Earth Day itself. I bet many of you were surprised to read that we've been celebrating for 40 years. It seems that only in the last 10 to 15 years has any fuss been made right? Well, part of that is due to the rampant and at times repulsive "greenwashing" that advertisers are taking advantage of, but a good portion of the reason that we are more aware now is that there are many people making a real effort to make our planet a better place. At times, it feels like a one-step-forward-two steps-back situation, but we must keep moving forward and not get mired down in feelings of powerlessness. Pledge to yourself on Earth Day that no matter how small your efforts, collectively they make a difference and you will keep recycling, keep supporting companies that are making the same efforts you are and keep bettering our environment with positive words and actions!

On to our experiment!

Oooh, let's see what we have here...a Sunchips bag from Frito Lay that claims to be 100% compostable! It definitely caught my eye while in the market looking for corn chips to go with the mountain of guacamole I was going to make with a bunch of ripe avocados that Zeke brought home. Nature was demanding an immediate batch be made or risk the avocados turning too ripe and not having any guacamole...which we all know is a crying shame. So, I found my corn chips (I like the one's with flax seed in them, but you should all know that you don't get much nutrition out of whole flax seeds as the only creatures whose digestive tracks can process them are birds) and was moving down the aisle when I saw the Sunchips bag and it's claim. I decided to give it a shot and knew that the 7 kids in our carpool would help me empty the bag on the way home from pickup so we could start the experiment right away. We had a lot of talk about the bag and a lot of laughs because just like it says on the bag, it is NOISY!! Plant materials are make more noise then synthetics. Here is the Sunchips bag nestled in it's pile of compost. I'll check it weekly and post the results and we can see how things progress together.

Update #1: The Sunchips bag has been snug in our compost pile for two week now. As you can see, there is pretty much no change to the bag, except that it is a bit dirtier. Hmmm, I'll give it another two weeks before checking on it again. Two and a half months have passed since we first plunged the Sunchips bag into the compost heap. I haven't checked it at all since the last update thinking that I wanted to give it some time to really start working on decomposing (which reminds me of that camp song, "Da Moose, Da Moose"). At any rate, here we are July 5, 2010 and I can report to you that the bag looks pretty much exactly the same as last time. I mean, not even a little more worse for the wear! I'm moving to plan B. I am going to cut the bag up into smaller pieces and see if that gets things moving. Check back to see what's happening....I'll post in another month. Here are a couple of pics from today.