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9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Biology

Resource Type

  • Articles and Websites

Regional Focus



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  • This article explores the benefits of composting as a climate solution for companies and individuals, along with adoption and integration scenarios, co-benefits, and suggested personal actions.
  • Students will learn about the emissions benefits of composting, the financial costs associated with composting under current regulations that make it more difficult to implement. and side benefits such as less fertilizer use and better water quality.
Teaching Tips


  • The information is formatted like a scientific paper, with a clear cause-and-effect framework.
  • Students and teachers can dive into other climate solutions related to composting, such as reducing fertilizer use and improving soil quality.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should have a basic understanding of the metric system, since the data is presented in metric tons.
  • The vocabulary is rigorous, so a definition list or graphic organizer will be appropriate.


  • This article would be a great addition to lessons about the carbon cycle, nitrogen cycle, or decomposition.
  • For small-group instruction, students can work together by taking notes on each section and creating questions about their assigned portion. Then, students can trade questions with other groups, ending with a student-led discussion.
  • Probability and statistics connections can be made in math classes, as there are several data points to evaluate costs and benefits over time, and the effects on the climate.
  • Students in English or language arts classes can use the article to evaluate the author's purpose and scientific writing styles or as practice for reading more complex scientific papers.
  • There are links to related solutions at the bottom of the webpage, so teachers can integrate a variety of articles into a unit on climate solutions.
Scientist Notes
This article discusses composting and the benefits, costs, and savings that could be seen if composting was adopted widely. The science behind composting is not discussed, but the impacts and limits are. The article is organized like a scientific paper and therefore is a good example of how science reports are structured. Resources are included. The information presented is accurate and this resource is recommended for teaching.

This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • Science
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • HS-ESS3-4. Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
    • ETS1: Engineering Design
      • HS-ETS1-1. Analyze a major global challenge to specify qualitative and quantitative criteria and constraints for solutions that account for societal needs and wants.
      • HS-ETS1-3. Evaluate a solution to a complex real-world problem based on prioritized criteria and trade-offs that account for a range of constraints, including cost, safety, reliability, and aesthetics, as well as possible social, cultural, and environmental impacts.
  • English Language Arts
    • Reading: Informational Text (K-12)
      • RI.TS.11–12.4 Evaluate the author’s choices concerning structure and the effectiveness of the structure an author uses in his or her exposition or argument, including whether the structure makes points clear, convincing, and engaging.
  • Related Resources


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