Earlier this week, I had lunch with Marian M, chair of Terwilliger Plaza's Green Team. I'd attended one of their monthly meetings and wanted to know more about their efforts to increase our CCRC's sustainability.
[Aside: "Sustainability," we have learned, is a major Portland buzzword. This link to an EPA definition is a reminder that "Nearly 80 per cent of Americans live in urban environments..." Probably anyone in the U.S. reading this--city or suburb.]
Learned that the Green Team was formed by residents about three years ago. Proper battery collection and the reduction of lighting in public rooms have been among their projects. Often recycle innovations involve more complexity and planning than you would imagine. Disposal of old television sets during the 2009 digital changeover was one of these. Most recent, and very impressive, is a grant Terwilliger has received to study the Green Roof idea as another possibilty.
Shared with Marian about my own work "Composting in Manhattan" and her response was revelatory. Seriously: the GT has initiated an outdoor compost collector behind the building. No red wigglers simply a straightforward arrangement.
Delighted with the chance, I disposed of the beet ribs (are these gorgeous beets) from a recent dinner. Placed dried leaves over them, poked a bit. Voila! Composting in PDX, very satisfying. Thanks to Marian and the GT, no more Bloom veggies/eggshells/coffee grounds down the chute.
Maybe more compost jewelry, knit red wiggler worms in the future. My imagination travels to a chorus of Green Team composters...elegant Terwilliger residents of both sexes decorated with beads from beets as they make poetry and music about the satisfaction of latelife composting.
The future of Terwilliger sustainability looks promising.