Craig Coker

Craig Coker

Craig Coker

Speaker and Workshop Instructor | Coker Composting

Troutville, VA | ccoker@cokercompost.com

USCC Member

Craig is an Environmental Scientist and Engineer with over 40 years of experience in the planning, permitting, design, construction and operation of organics recycling facilities processing a wide variety of wastes using several composting and digestion technologies. He has been involved with ASP composting since 1977. In addition to running Coker Composting & Consulting, he is a Senior Editor at BioCycle magazine. Craig has worked on developing composting facilities in North America, the Middle East, Africa and South Asia. Craig has an undergraduate degree in Environmental Science from the University of Virginia and a graduate degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from George Washington University.

Session Name: Persistent Herbicides in Compost: Identifying the Problem, Exploring Solutions

Session Time: Thursday, January 30, 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM

Presentation Title: How Do You Avoid PH Contamination, and What Do You Do When You Have It

Presentation Description: Persistent Herbicides are chemical broadleaf weed killers that survive the composting process and continue to negatively affect susceptible plants grown with compost.  The four major types of persistent herbicides include: Clopyralid, Aminopyralid, Aminocyclopyrachlor, and Picloram.  The purpose of this session is to bring to light the widespread nature of this problem, and encourage open discussion with USCC members on an often taboo subject.  In this session, panelists will discuss what persistent herbicides are and the vectors through which they get into compost, along with strategies to control these vectors.  We will review testing methods, both in-house and laboratory-based, that can be used to identify the presence of persistent herbicides in finished compost as well as remediation strategies that have been successfully used in the past. We will examine the implications of persistent herbicides in compost for the organic agriculture market. We will highlight the issues for generic persistent herbicides that may be registered for use in a few years, and implications of this event for the composting industry.  Finally, we will explore potential markets for contaminated compost.  We encourage audience participation.


Workshop Time: Tuesday, January 28, 1:00 PM – 4:30 PM

Workshop Title: Basics of Aerated Static Pile (ASP) Composting

Workshop Description: This four-hour workshop will introduce attendees to aerated static pile (ASP) composting, a growing alternative to traditional windrow composting. ASP composting has been around since the mid-1970s and was the main approach used for composting sewage sludges in the early days. With the growing popularity of food waste composting, ASP systems are being considered more often due to their smaller footprint, better process control, and fewer odor management challenges.