Master Composter Recycler (MCR) is a free four-week education program offered every spring and fall throughout the year. Through training sessions, hands-on workshops, and facility tours, you will become more knowledgeable about how waste is managed in the Halifax region, from collection to processing. You will also learn how to reduce waste through backyard composting and other at-home solutions.
The MCR program is open to all Halifax Regional Municipality residents interested in becoming waste champions within their families, communities, and work places. MCR is new to Nova Scotia but has been a popular and long-standing program in other municipalities in Canada and the United States.
The Spring MCR course has been POSTPONED until September 2020 in an effort to mitigate the effects of COVID-19. Updates will be provided as staff monitor the COVID-19 pandemic. If you would like more information, please contact a Waste Resource Educator or see the latest update on the municipality's response to COVID-19.
The introductory session will provide a course overview, addressing the importance of proper waste management and waste reduction. The session will also include an interactive "What Goes Where" presentation about proper waste sorting at home and at work, addressing questions of compostable vs biodegradable, and recyclable plastic items vs garbage. The presentation will feature examples of recycled products made from our everyday waste items.
The second session will include two facility tours:
- Otter Lake Waste Management Facility; located near Lakeside. This field trip will include a tour of the landfill and its unique features, including a Waste Stabilization Facility and Front-End Processor.
- The recycling facility in Bayer's Lake which will provide a "behind the scenes" look at how our waste is diverted from the landfill and processed for market.
Topics of waste diversion and reduction will be discussed in greater detail during the third session. Information will be provided about textile recycling options, electronics recycling, HRM's construction waste recycling, and how to manage household batteries and other special waste. We will share tips and strategies for reducing plastic and food waste.
This session will provide in-depth information about the science of composting, and how to build and maintain your own compost pile at home. With show and tell items to help demonstrate, this session will share tips on how to turn your food scraps into a valuable resource!
The topic of composting will continue in this session, with an in-depth look at how to build healthy soil using compost, how to do vermi(worm)-composting, making "compost tea", and how to use your finished compost!
This Saturday session will include a tour of the Organics Processing Facility in Burnside followed by a hands-on composting and gardening demonstration at the Sackville Community Food Garden, located behind the Sackville Public Library. Different examples of backyard composting systems will be showcased and discussed, and a garden tour will provide information about how to fertilize various plant species using compost.
The final session will provide a review of all topics covered and a discussion of the various connections that participants identify. Following the closing discussion, each participant will receive a Master Composter Recycler certificate of completion and will complete a program evaluation. Finally, there will be time for snacks and social time to celebrate completion.