June 20, 2019

Bar Harbor considering proposal to compost town’s yard wastes

BAR HARBOR — Bar Harbor may soon consider a yard waste composting proposal which could potentially remove 20 percent from the town’s total waste stream.

The Town Council directed Town Manager Dana Reed on Tuesday evening to develop a formal proposal which would include turning part of the sewage sludge site in Hulls Cove into a town-operated compost pile.

According to Reed, the town’s solid waste committee had discussed the feasibility of removing grass clippings, brush and leaves from the trash which is now being shipped to the PERC facility.

“We could definitely lower our costs if we get into composting,” Reed said, in discussing the project with the council. “When the leaves come in from landscapers in the spring and fall, they are soggy. So we are paying to haul away both the leaves and the water.”

In preliminary discussion of the project, Reed explained that, if the compositing site were established, yard waste would no longer be deposited at the town’s transfer station at Strawberry Hill. That waste would instead be accepted at the Hulls Cove site, which would be monitored by a full-time employee.

Reed indicated that the town had already received tacit approval for the plan from the DEP. If the council eventually approves a formal proposal, the Planning Board would need to do a site plan review.

Composted yard waste would result in rich soil, particularly if mixed with sludge already at the site, Reed said.

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