November 22, 2006 | General

Editorial: BioCycle's Mission Captured In A Subtitle

BioCycle November 2006, Vol. 47, No. 11, p. 4
Nora Goldstein

When Compost Science was founded in 1960, the magazine title was simply that, Compost Science. In the Spring of 1968, a subtitle was added, “Journal of Solid Wastes and Soil.” Then in May 1970, the subtitle was changed to “Journal of Waste Recycling.” (Interestingly, that issue also announced the formation of the Association for the Composting and Waste Recycling Industry.)
“Journal of Waste Recycling” remained through the magazine’s name change to BioCycle in January 1981, and lived on until May 1993. At that time, the subtitle was changed to “Journal of Composting & Recycling.” I was a freshman in high school when Journal of Waste Recycling was adopted in 1970 (and therefore was way more enthralled with Woodstock than waste recycling). By 1993, however, I was 15 years into my career at The JG Press, Inc. and clearly remember the rationale. The early 1990s were the heydays for recycling and composting programs. States had adopted recycling goals, yard trimmings were banned from landfills in over 20 states, and opportunities for diversion abounded. The mantra that we were dealing with “resources” and not “wastes” led BioCycle editors to remove the word “waste” from our subtitle.
By 2000, with materials recycling programs well-established and the world overpopulated with recycling publications, we made yet another bold move. While we would still cover recycling of bottles, cans, plastic and other “nonorganic” resources – and continue our State of Garbage In America survey – BioCycle placed its editorial emphasis on organic resources in the municipal, industrial, agricultural, commercial and institutional waste streams. And thus, in August 2000, the subtitle, “Journal of Composting & Organics Recycling” was adopted.
As this first decade of the 21st century has unfolded, it has become blatantly clear that our almost 50-year mission of advocating for utilization of organic (and nonorganic) resources in the waste stream has shifted gears. What once were viewed as pioneering technologies and projects are now mainstream options for waste management and production of high value end products and renewable energy and fuels. And these mainstream management options are crucial to global sustainability and energy independence. We need to advocate for – and advance – their adoption and implementation. For this reason, we are changing our subtitle once again, incorporating our coverage of renewable energy as well as composting and organics recycling. BioCycle, Advancing Composting, Organics Recycling & Renewable Energy – that is our mission captured in a subtitle.

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