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As 2014’s Miss Boise, Carolyn Pace, now 30, used her public appearances to promote going green. But after moving to Aurora, she traded her tiara for a truck and founded Wompost in 2018 to make composting more accessible—and the benefits more tangible—for her neighbors. We break down her strategy here.*
53: Tons of greenhouse gas emissions in CO2 equivalents Wompost has kept from escaping into the atmosphere since the company launched. Yes, composting releases a little CO2, but it’s negligible compared to the potent greenhouse gases (like methane) landfills emit. Plus, nutrient-dense compost improves soil, and, thus, plant health.
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153,568: Pounds of waste Wompost has diverted from landfills—the combined weight of five typical garbage trucks. Subscribers, who pay between $9 and $29 a month, receive a five- or 64-gallon bucket and compostable bags that they fill with food and yard debris. Pace and her team retrieve the waste weekly from curbs and apartment dweller-friendly drop-off points across Aurora, then bring it to a facility where it’s turned into nutrient-rich fertilizer.
1: Number of refurbished RTD buses Pace has converted into a compost education center and plant shop. Pace scored the 12-year-old behemoth from a fellow recycler, and while she hasn’t been able to host many events during the pandemic, she plans to open the bus for business outside Wompost’s 25th Avenue office and at farmers’ markets.
60: Gallons of compost each Wompost subscriber receives each year, enough to fill a four-by-eight-foot raised bed when mixed with topsoil. Seeing what food waste can become (and using it to grow vegetables), Pace says, motivates people to continue composting. Shares also can be donated to community gardens.
10%: Wompost subscribers receiving reduced or free composting services through the company’s financial assistance program, which Pace started to ensure no one is priced out of environmental action. She’ll expand the scholarships using part of a $158,000 grant from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
*Numbers are from February 2021.