You Can Compost That!

Making composting a reality for everyone, whether you live in a mansion or a 400-sq ft studio.
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Vivian Liao
Environment
Los Angeles, California
United States
2 Team Members

UPDATE: 

City Bin in the news!

http://www.chinesedailyusa.com/article/article-c167308.aspx

http://la.worldjournal.com/view/full_la/21394382/article-%E5%AE%B6%E5%BA%AD%E5%BB%9A%E9%A4%98%E8%A3%BD%E5%A0%86%E8%82%A5-%E6%9C%80%E7%92%B0%E4%BF%9D?instance=lafas

 

Watch the new City Bin infomercial! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xgtmIWti-dU&feature=youtu.be

We are so thankful for all our supporters! While there are set perks, please don't feel that you have contribute a certain amount to help.  If you like what we are about, please contribute a dollar or whatever you can now before you forget. We are genuinely, sincerely grateful for your generosity!

 

Who We Are

Thank you for joining us in the composting revolution!

My name is Vivian Liao, and I am a Los Angeles-based environmental engineer. I am also a molecular biologist by training.  As the founder of City Earthworm, LLC, I (with the help of T2 Design in Santa Monica, CA) have designed the City Bin, an indoor composter that will not only elevate the relatively marginal status of composting but convince the average person that they CAN and WANT to compost.  Julia Barnett is a musician, avid enviromentalist, and a recent composting convert.  With your help, we hope to make household composting as much a part of the average American's life as brushing one's teeth.

Trash is a growing national and global problem.  According to the Clear Air Council and Garbology Challenge, America accounts for over one-third of the world's waste. Most of that trash ends up in landfills. In the United States, one ton of waste per person ends up in landfills each year. Also, about seventy percent of U.S. municipal waste is buried in landfills. Aside from the Great Wall of China, the Fresh Kills landfill in New York City is the only man made structure visible from space!  

However, the growing trash situation is a problem we can all help solve by composting.  Composting is quite possibly the most wonderful thing a single individual can do for the environment.  It is even more beneficial than the recycling of household materials that so many of us already practice.  If you are a gardener, composting also produces the BEST FOOD YOUR PLANTS HAVE EVER MET.  Just by feeding our food waste to the City Bin, we will extend the life of our landfills and vastly reduce the release of greenhouse gases into our atmosphere (and this is just the tip of the iceberg of benefits!).  Composting is also the perfect educational activity for teaching kids about biology, ecology, and global warming (NOTE: 5% of our profits will be donated to local schools).

Unfortunately, the common perception of indoor household composting remains a combination of "Eww, gross!", "I'd love to, but I just don't have the space", "So much work!", and "Those composters sure are large, ugly, and expensive!".

The City Bin changes all of that.  It will be made of recycled plastic and responsibly manufactured in Los Angeles.  It utilizes a space-saving design that will also minimize the materials used in shipping (another environmental benefit!).  It is the size of an average bathroom waste basket and, importantly, something you would be happy to leave on display in your home (instead of hidden under the sink).

Join us in making composting possible for everyone!

 

What We Need & What You Get

Your contributions will help us pay for:

  • injection molds (4 pieces) =$60,000
  • 1000 units produced at UPM (Baldwin Park, CA) = $12,000 (made locally here in LA out of recycled materials
  • Indiegogo fees

No matter what amount you donate, we'd like to help you start composting!

Premiums include

  • Shout-out on the website
  • "Just Add Water" Complete City Bin kit which includes the City Bin, bedding, earthworms, and instructions on how to begin composting in your very own home
  • "Compost" by Douglas Green Kindle Edition e-book
  • Donation of "Just Add Water" Complete City Bin Kit to classroom(s) of your choice
  • Personal Composting Tutorial and Tech Support - we will teach you everything you need to know to compost at home!

 

The Impact

NOTE: 5% of profits will be donated to local schools to jumpstart their own sustainability practices.

By contributing to the City Bin by City Earthworm campaign, you will become part of a movement to revolutionize how the average citizen interacts with the environment.  According to the EPA, more than 34 million tons of food waste was generated in 2010, and they account for 14% of all municipal solid waste. Food waste is also the single largest contributor to landfills and incinerators.  The following things happen when we dump food waste into landfills:

  • As food rots, greenhouse gases like methane are produced and enter the atmosphere, intensifying the global climate changes we are already experiencing (methane, by the way, has a Global Warming Potential that is 21 times worse than carbon dioxide).
  • Food waste takes up LOTS of room in landfills.  Our existing landfills have an average of 28 years left, according to Waste Management in its 2006 Annual Report.  More waste = shorter landfill lifespan. It’s simple math.
  • We use more synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, which pollute our waters.

In contrast, when we compost, all of the potential within food is realized.  By composting:

  • Food waste becomes food for bacteria and fungi.  Decomposition by bacteria and fungi turns food waste into highly nutritious fertilizer for plants, with natural pesticides!
  • The amount of waste going into landfills and garbage disposals is dramatically reduced.
  • The amount of greenhouse gases coming from landfills will also be reduced.
  • The amount of food waste sent down garbage disposals is reduced, lessening the load on our wastewater treatment plants.
  • Your trash will be less stinky!
  • You can even sell your compost!
  • You can teach your children valuable lessons about biology, ecology, and sustainability.

Many composters already exist on the market.  However, most of them have failed to turn composting into a common household practice because they are:

  • Large and bulky
  • Require strength to turn and dispose of compost
  • Require the user to have a yard/chickens (for example, Bokashi alone/grub composting)
  • Do not turn the waste into fully useable compost (Bokashi alone)
  • Require lots of effort
  • Unattractive!

In spite of all this, more and more people are starting to compost (awesome!).  The most popular method of indoor composting for average households is vermicomposting, which uses particular species of earthworms to break down kitchen waste.  The City Bin will utilize vermicomposting and has the following advantages over current models:

  • It has a sleek, modern design that will fit in with any style of household décor.
  • It is the size of a bathroom wastebasket and can easily fit in the kitchen, bathroom, under the sink, or on a balcony.
  • It produces fully useable compost.
  • It does not require super strength to turn.
  • It is so easy to use, one could train a child to compost using the City Bin.
  • For those who already compost, it eliminates the need for a separate kitchen waste collector.

 

Other Ways You Can Help

Show our video to your friends and use the Indiegogo share tools!

Spread the word about the City Bin and composting in general.

Check us out on Facebook.

Become more mindful about how much you consume and how much you throw into the trash.

COMPOST!

Find This Campaign On
$11,536USD
raised by 55 people in 1 month
15% funded
0 time left
$75,000 USD goal
Fixed Funding This campaign did not meet its $75,000USD funding goal by the deadline.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on January 26, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $5USD
    Egg

    Name on our website and shout-out on Facebook as a founding contributor. Thank you!

    8 claimed
  • $25USD
    Caterpillar

    Website mention + Facebook shout-out + Compost by Douglas Green Kindle Edition or similar e-book. Thank you!

    2 claimed
    Estimated delivery: February 2013
  • $49USD
    Butterfly

    Website mention + Facebook shout-out + You Can Compost That! T-Shirt with City Earthworm Logo (made of 5% recycled material). Thank you! Shipping is free in the USA. Add $15 for Canada and $35 international.

    1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: February 2013
  • $50USD
    NEW! Special price City Bin!

    FOR A LIMITED TIME ONLY! Website mention + Facebook shout-out + 1 City Bin. Thank you! Shipping is included in the USA. Add $15 for Canada and $35 international.

    4 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $90USD
    Early Bird Gets CityEarthWorm

    Website mention + Facebook shout-out + 1 City Bin. Thank you! Shipping is included in the USA. Add $15 for Canada and $35 international.

    8 out of 25 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $112USD
    City Earthworm

    Website mention + Facebook shout-out + 1 City Bin. Thank you! Shipping is included in the USA. Add $15 for Canada and $35 international.

    1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $165USD
    Big City Earthworm

    Website mention + Facebook shout-out + Just Add Water! Complete City Bin Kit (w/worm bedding, instructions, box of red worms). Thank you! Shipping is free in the USA. Add $20 for Canada and $40 international.

    11 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $275USD
    Professor City Earthworm

    Website mention + Just Add Water! Complete City Bin Kit (w/worm bedding and box of red worms) + donation of one Just Add Water! Complete City Bin Kit to one classroom of your choice. Thank you! Shipping is free in the USA. Add $30 for Canada and $50 international.

    12 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $499USD
    City Earthworm Gangnam Style

    Website mention + 2 Just Add Water! Complete City Bin Kits (w/worm bedding and box of red worms) + donation of 2 Just Add Water! Complete City Bin Kits to classrooms of your choice. Thank you! Shipping is free in the USA. Add $40 for Canada and $60 international.

    3 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $2,000USD
    L.A. Earthworm

    Los Angeles and Orange Counties Only: Personal composting tutorial + Website mention + 4 Just Add Water! Complete City Bin Kits (w/worm bedding, instructions, and box of red worms). Thank you! Shipping is free in the USA.

    0 out of 10 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
  • $5,000USD
    Mayor of City Earthworm

    Donation of City Bins to 25 Classrooms in your name + website mention + 2 Just Add Water! Complete City Bin Kits (w/worm bedding, instructions, and box of red worms) just for you! Thank you! Shipping is free in the USA. Add $75 for Canada and $120 international.

    0 claimed
    Estimated delivery: May 2013
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