Second Grant Award to Composting Council Research and Education Foundation to Fund Development of a Professional Composter Certification Program
04/19/2016 1:41 PM
The 11th Hour Project, a program of The Schmidt Family Foundation, has awarded a second grant of $115,000 to the Composting Council’s Research and Education Foundation (CCREF) to continue its work in developing a Professional Compost Certification Program (PCCP) for compost facility managers and staff.
This second grant is a two part grant in which the CCREF has received $75,000 to continue its work in developing a PCCP for compost facility managers and staff. The second part of the grant, $40,000, is a partnership between the CCREF and the Institute for Local Self Reliance to provide scholarships for community composters.
The goal of the PCCP is to move the compost industry training to a higher level by certifying compost facility staff training. The purpose is to certify training for staff while also providing assurance to the public and regulators that the staff running compost facilities have the training necessary to properly manage compost facilities and avoid or quickly manage problems such as odors, vermin or fire at the facility.
Developing the Professional Compost Certification Program
By 2017, compost facility operators can join other professions with credentials as a CPC, or Certified Professional Composters, escalating the profile of an industry that already has hundreds of facilities in the U.S. Achieving certification will mean a facility operator is qualified—after demonstrating through education, experience and testing – to run or work at a modern composting facility. The grant from 11th Hour empowers the Foundation to recruit a professional certification body to manage the certification process, and to develop standards and testing.
This second grant is divided into two parts: 1) developing a competency exam and 2) establish administrative procedures for certifying compost facility staff.
Part 1 of the grant will consist of developing the competency exam and will focus on general knowledge, skills and abilities. State-specific subsections will be developed for those states requiring training in their states will be considered.
Part 2 of the grant will focus on the establishment of the administrative procedures. This will involve the defining requirements for certification, developing a list of approved training programs, a method for approving continuing education units, developing a governance and administrative system and establishing an evaluation system.
The intent is to have these components in place to begin awarding certification certificates by the end of 2016.
Community Composter Grant Fund
The second part of the grant will provide scholarships for community composters. The funds will be placed into a Scholarship Fund for Community Composters to fund attendance at the 3rd Annual Cultivating Community Composting Forum to be held at the USCC’s 2016 Annual Conference.
Community Composters may be awarded up to $700 per person to attend the conference. The goal is to build a stronger tie between community composters and larger commercial compost facilities by bringing them together at the Conference.
In order to achieve maximum diversion of organics from landfills both of these facilities types will be needed, which is why this opportunity to attend the Forum is so valuable.
About the Composting Council Research and Education Foundation
The Composting Council Research and Education Foundation supports initiatives that enhance the stature and practices of the composting industry by supporting scientific research, increasing awareness, and educating the public to advance environmentally and economically sustainable organics recycling.
About the 11th Hour Project
The 11th Hour Project promotes a more responsible relationship with the world’s water, energy, and food resources by championing a fuller understanding of the impact of human activity within the web of interdependent living systems.