Many apartments near USF offer several green options in the complex that will provide you with a good start towards a greener lifestyle including low energy lighting, native landscaping, tankless water heaters, and recycling options. When you pull up any of our apartment listings go to apartment amenities and scroll down to Green Efforts. You will see the green options for each apartment you are looking at around the University of South Florida or you can search by green options.
Another option that most may think is not possible in apartment living is composting. Composting is the process of taking your kitchen and household waste and turning it into valuable, nutrient rich food for your plants and garden by a natural process of composting.
1. Enriches soil, helping retain moisture and suppress plant diseases and pests.
2. Reduces the need for chemical fertilizers.
3. Encourages the production of beneficial bacteria and fungi that break down organic matter to create humus, a rich nutrient-filled material.
4. Reduces methane emissions from landfills and lowers your carbon footprint.
But the biggest benefit to individual apartment owners that they can see right away is the amount of waste in trashcans on a daily basis which means fewer trips to take the garbage out.
HOW TO GET STARTED COMPOSTING
The first step would be to check with your apartment complex and if composting is allowed. There are many containers available at any local store such as Target, Walmart, or home improvement stores. They make containers to fit inside your kitchen cabinet or small enough to fit on your counter. If you have an outdoor patio space you may want to use a container there. Containers come in all price ranges starting around $15 so you can find one to match your budget and get started right away.
WHAT GOES INTO YOUR COMPOST CONTAINER
You can put any old or unused parts of vegetables or fruits, eggshells, coffee grounds/filters, tea bags, shredded paper, or paper towels. Many items that we throw away daily can be combined in your compost pile and the key is to get a good mix of items. Once you get started and learn more things that can be composted you will be amazed how much you were throwing away daily that could have been saved.
OTHER OPTIONS TO BEGIN COMPOSTING
You can do all the composting on your own or many cities including Tampa have companies that will pick up or you can drop off your compost for them to process. Suncoast Compost makes composting easy in the Tampa Bay area whether at home or at work they provide the containers along with pick up or drop off locations along with other useful information on other ways we can help our planet.
Another company to check out is Hillsborough Community Composting Alliance. They are a great resource for every household that is getting started in composting with many tools and solutions that will help you on your way.
We hope you find this information helpful on your way to a greener lifestyle at your USF off-campus housing. Many things you can start right away and are budget-friendly including recycling, composting, and the lighting in your apartment.