November 19, 2007 | General

Editorial: Bridge To Sustainability

Nora Goldstein
BioCycle November 2007, Vol. 48, No. 11, p. 4
Each fall, we publish a BioCycle Media Planner – a marketing tool for current and prospective advertisers in our magazine. The front cover of the Planner highlights the core message we want to convey. For several years, that message has been the “Power of Organics” – a phrase that captures the benefits of organics recycling for healthy soils, clean water and power and fuel generation. Each issue of BioCycle reports on best methods to tap into the Power of Organics.
After almost 50 years since our launch in 1960, the magazine now has an international reputation for making major connections happen. We know how to connect readers with the right equipment – how to link current and high quality knowledge to project creators and operators.
The editorial mission of BioCycle is to present effective waste management solutions. Every issue is packed with practical details and insights to advance composting, organics recycling and renewable energy. The infrastructure that we have all helped to build is processing millions of tons of residuals into compost, mulch, biofuels, power and other value-added products.
We have reached a juncture, however, where we need to ratchet up the discussion of how to put the Power of Organics to work more effectively as an environmental problem-solving tool. We believe that the systems and equipment, facility and project management skills, along with supporting research are very well proven and established. Now, the most significant challenges we face are related to public policy (which includes regulations and permitting), competing with established hauling and landfill economics, plus a lack of awareness about the link that organics recycling has to addressing environmental and economic issues.
As we brainstormed our Media Planner theme for 2008, it became clear that what BioCycle and its readers and advertisers symbolize is the Bridge to Sustainability. Our collective tool kit is filled with solutions that address a full range of community sustainability factors – from local food and fuel production to water quality and public health. In this issue’s “Regional Roundup” section, there is an item about Growing Power, a farm started by a former professional basketball player in the Milwaukee region. After establishing the farm as a sustainable, equitable urban food source (currently producing 100,000 pounds of chemical-free vegetables annually), it was merged with a training center to reconnect people with the land. Growing Power teaches people from diverse backgrounds about community food systems and producing compost for sale, and hosts workshops on intensive vegetable growing.
While the field of converting organics into renewable products will be filled with self-discovery, we will always be generating the critical data on how to best use grinders, turners, screens, vessels, anaerobic digesters and microturbines with profitability and long-term success. Our focus will continue to be on how to convert a variety of organic waste streams into high value compost with minimum public health impacts; converting farm, municipal and industrial organics into biogas power; and recycling reusable products into valuable raw materials.
Together, we are Building The Bridge To Sustainability.

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