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Municipal Composting

Urban Composting Operations
| Boston, MA | 1992-2012 |

In 1992, City Soil envisioned the development of a professionally managed composting and bioenergy farm on a vacant unpaved parcel in the heart of Boston's historic greenbelt of horticulture, community gardens, and urban forest. City Soil has worked since the inception of Boston's leaf collection program to develop effective urban composting operations to manage organic wastes generated by state and city agencies, residents, businesses and institutions.

When a 67 acre parcel of the former Boston State Hospital site in Mattapan was being acquired by Massachusetts Audubon Society to host the Boston Nature Center, City Soil advocated that a portion be dedicated to a composting site for the anticipated diversion of the City's yard waste from landfilling and incineration. Lobbied the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for the use of an adjacent 4.5 acre site owned by the Metropolitan District Commission to process the urban parkland's leaves and its commercial and institutional sector organics. These two sites have been used by Boston Public Works Department, the Commonwealth, and their contractors to compost most of the urban source-separated residential and commercial yard waste for the past 15 years.

Commonwealth Compost™ delivered to Boston Nature Center for urban orchard and community gardens.


Zoo New England - Franklin Park Zoo
| Dorchester, MA |

City Soil developed composting operations to handle manure from the Franklin Park Zoo, manure from Boston Police horses, and leaves from Boston Housing Authority.

Composted commercial food waste from Boston's historic Haymarket. Developed product portfolio and marketing materials and assisted in locating sites, securing permits and developing revenue-generating feedstocks. Specified, procured and maintained composting equipment, trained personnel in use, operation and maintenance. Performed process monitoring, sampling, growth trials and coordinated lab analyses. Conducted public relations, fundraising from investors and grants for equipment and operations, research and demonstration.

Compost turner, powered by 80 Horsepower propane turner, aerates and blends windrows of food waste and manure at Franklin Park Zoo.


Allandale Farm
| Agricultural Composting | Boston and Brookline, MA |

Developed turned windrow and passively aerated composting operations at the 70 acre Allandale Farm, Boston's oldest farm, which has been in continuous operation since the 1700's. The farm site was key to the establishment of the City of Boston's Haymarket food waste composting program, and set up relationships with local landscapers who annually bring leaves to the site that are composted to replenish soil tilth and fertility. The site has been used to diverted more than 20,000 cubic yards of leaves from disposal since its inception, which are composted with manures from the farm and crop residues.


Public Works Department
| Boston, MA | 1992-2012 |

City Soil consulted on the startup of operations through USDA funded Greater Boston Urban Resources Partnership. Fulford has provided ongoing management recommendations for the 4 acre composting site with Boston Public Works through pro-bono roles as Suffolk County Conservation Commissioner and as Chair of Environment Committee at the Boston Nature Center.

Provided operational recommendations, site planning, coordination of turning and screening equipment, site operations, and lab analyses of end product. Developed environmental monitoring and compliance plans, worked with community garden groups and other stakeholders to secure funds for public education of residents, and for compost operator site training. Developed public educational materials to support residential leaf collection and outreach program. Provided recommendations on windrow layout, drainage, odor control, and mitigation and removal of glass, plastic and other contaminants in the yard waste stream and evaluation of potential pathways of physical and chemical contamination. Coordinated screening and distribution of the city's compost to community gardens using local independent truckers. Sampled compost, tested finished products and conducted growth trials of compost. Worked with Tufts University graduate student team to evaluate the potential of the site to utilize vegetated filters to remove nutrients and pollutants from site runoff.

Compost turner increasing throughput on Boston Nature Center site.


Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation
| Boston-Jamaica Plain, MA | 1992-2012 |

City Soil has worked to build the capacity and improve the operation of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts' Boston composting site for 20 years. The 4.5 acre site adjoins a cemetery, a Department of Youth Services Correctional Facility, a Department of Corrections pre-release center, and an overflow parking area for Zoo New England. It is separated from the Boston Nature Center and Clark-Cooper Community Gardens by a major throughfare into Boston that is used by more than 25,000 vehicles daily.

Assessed former parking lot for contamination from illegal dumping, evaluated its suitability for composting site yard waste, animal manure and food residuals from local generators. Initiated formation and management of windrows for composting organic wastes generated by the MDC and DCR in their stewardship of the urban forest and other public land in the greater Boston area.

Sampled, tested and utilized products from the site in creating the Boston Nature Center and Olmsted Green housing development. City Soil advocated for integrated development of the site for bioenergy and agricultural systems, and synchronous operations between Boston Public Works and DCR composting sites. Developed environmental management plan for private operator, including odor control protocols, stormwater and leachate management, site and operations plans with retail and wholesale landscape supply elements, monitoring and reporting protocols. Worked with state agencies to improve management practices on the site.


Town of Lee
| Composting Site Feasibility Assessment | Lee, MA | 2003 |

City Soil teamed with the Center for Ecological Technology on a feasibility study for composting food waste and other Town of Lee's multi-material composting site.

Identified and estimated the compostable components of the town's waste stream, including biosolids from the water treatment plant and solids from the paper mills located in the town. Addressed how the town could promote waste hauling services to include organic waste collection, and evaluated private sector sites on two farms located in the town.


Town of Melrose
| Melrose, MA | 1996-1997|

City Soil worked worked with prime contractor Lion's Head Organics, Cook Forest Products and Clear View Consulting on remediation of 50,000 cubic yard organic waste dump site abandoned by previous private contractor on Town property. Negotiated contract terms with Public Works Department, developed facility registration and secured MDEP permitting for multi-level leaf and yard waste composting operations, wood waste grinding, street sweepings and catch basin cleanings separation and management. Promoted use of site for food waste composting with large supermarket chain. Developed markets for tested and screened compost including products used the in creation of the Food Project Urban Farm in Roxbury, MA.

Left: Composting leaves with windrow turner at rehabilitated site of former leaf dump. Right: Manufactured soil used for the Food Project and ReVision House.


Town of Needham Public Works Department
| Needham, MA | 1991-1992|

Developed yard waste composting site plan and Massachusetts DEP registration for Needham's Public Works Department site at edge of wetlands and tributary to the Charles River. Provided oversite for facility construction, wetlands buffer measures, operational startup and staff training, process monitoring and data collection, finished product sampling, testing and end use recommendations.


Solana Recyclers, Inc.
| North San Diego County, CA | 1991 |

In response to California municipal waste reduction laws, Fulford worked with Solana Recyclers, Inc. to prepare yard waste composting program proposals for several towns.

Scope of work for Solana Recylers included technical and financial feasibility studies for composting commercial and institutional food waste composting, yard waste and manure. Scope of work included public presentations and stakeholder meetings, site evaluation, site selection and permitting, feedstock identification and collection system design, equipment procurement, project staffing and training, and implementation.


City of Lowell
| Lowell, MA | 1990 |

Under contract with Recourse Systems, Inc, Fulford developed composting site plan working with City of Lowell and privately contracted landfill management firm.

Lead author of successful $100,000 proposal to Massachusetts DEP that funded recycling feasibility study, leaf and yard waste collection and compost program expansion. Established field data collection and operator training program for private sector compost site operator and engineering firm working on closed portion of Lowell landfill.


New York City Department of Sanitation
| Rikers Island Detention Facility | Queens, New York, NY | 1987-1988 |

While leading Tellus Institute's Organic Waste Management Team, Fulford co-authored the $500,000 grant proposal to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority which launched the $5,500,000 project. Developed the conceptual design of the Rikers Island NYC food waste composting facility.

The Rikers Island composting facillity has provided on-site processing for up to 25 tons per day of cafeteria food wastes for a population of 20,000 inmates and staff. The facility has diverted more than 75,000 tons of food waste from landfilling and incineration since it came on-line in 1997. The roof of the facility hosts a solar photovoltaic array that now provides 40 kW of power that provides a significant portion of the facility's operational power. Finished compost is used in the organic farm and landscape on the site that provides fresh produce, vocational training, and reduces costs to taxpayers.
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Massachusetts DEP
| Newton, MA | 1987-1988 |

Fulford was contracted by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection to develop a model composting operation to serve as a template for other municipalities in preparation of the 1992 statewide ban on incineration and landfilling of leaves. As lead consultant on this pioneering project, Fulford worked closely with Newton's City government and DEP staff.

Provided the site design for the Rumford Avenue leaf and yard waste composting facility, producing the specifications for the composting pad, windrow dimensions, turning and screening equipment, and designed the site for leachate and stormwater runoff management. Made presentations on composting to citizens groups and the Board of Aldermen to develop public support for the project and provided operational education for Newton's senior staff. Developed data collection forms, trained Newton Public Works Department equipment operators and other site personnel, monitored compost and environmental temperatures, rainfall, material bulk density and moisture content, and collected samples of finished products for laboratory analyses. Produced research reports, graphics, photo-documentation for statewide trainings and national presentations. Since the inception of its leaf composting program, the City has diverted more than 100,000 tons of yard waste from landfilling and incineration to environmentally beneficial uses.


Town of Yarmouth
| Yarmouth, MA | 1987-1988 |

Fulford developed compost site design and operations plan for leaves and grass clippings, conducted site operator training program for the Town of Yarmouth Public Works, and conducted extensive research that was used in setting standards for compost site management for the Commonwealth.

Determined the degradation of commonly used pesticides and fertilizers in yard wastes during the composting process. Studied the effects of leachate and stormwater runoff from compost on groundwater and surface water resources. Developed guidelines for windrow composting of grass clippings based on available equipment and labor and odor control.


Commercial Composting

Greenleaf Composting Company
| Boston and Brookline, MA | 1992-1994 |

Fulford co-founded Greenleaf Composting, one of the nation's first privately owned urban composting operations. The company pioneered Boston's organic waste diversion programs for small scale-on site composting systems, source separation and collection of commercial food wastes, and launched composting operations on three sites in Boston.

Established sites at Allandale Farm and the Franklin Park Zoo. Greenleaf was the first private operator of the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation's 4.5 acre site that hosts the current yard waste composting operation. Developed the company's product portfolio, marketing materials and the company locating sites, securing permits and revenue-generating feedstocks, Specified and procured composting equipment, trained personnel in use, operation and maintenance performed process monitoring, conducted soil sampling and growth trials and conducted outreach to establish public relations.


New England Organics, Hawk Ridge Composting Facility
| Unity, ME | 1990 |

City Soil provided odor control consulting services for large scale commercial composting operations including sampling, testing and analytical protocols, odor mitigation retrofits of existing air handling systems, and expert advisory services in public meetings.


Martha's Vineyard
| Edgartown, Oak Bluffs, West Tisbury | 1987-1989 |

Worked with the Martha's Vineyard Refuse Disposal & Resource Conservation District and the Duke's County Conservation District, Massachusetts Department of Food and Agriculture, and Massachusetts Department of Environmental Quality to identify and design compost sites and sustainable manure management practices at Seaside Dairy.

Sourced and composted clean organic waste materials from the islands's with manures. Coordinated the state's first trials of commercially available windrow turners for farm composting equipment, obtained funds for additional equipment and managed composting trials with paper and cardboard bedding. Assessed composting site options at five of the island's town-owned landfills. Project experience was used in developing agricultural composting regulations for Commonwealth of Massachusetts.


Wrentham Development Center
| Wrentham, MA | 1987-1989 |

City Soil worked with Groundscapes Express, a commercial landscape and erosion control specialty firm, to secure state financing from the Massachusetts DEP to develop one of the state's premiere composting facilities on land owned by the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health.

Promoted project to state officials from DEP, DMH, and EoEA. Identified sources of state funding and authored a $100,000 grant proposal. Developed site design, specified and sourced windrow turning equipment and conducted negotiations with vendor. Prepared operations plan and secured agricultural composting site registration for five acre facility. Identified and sourced food wastes, conducted operator training, developed management protocols, established contingency plan and implemented protective measures for water resources. Prepared project status reports and secured funds from MDEP for equipment and site development expenses.