Education has always been a part of our business. This was surprising to us at first, but it became clear that if we were going to persuade anyone to use our service, we needed to educate them on why our planet needs us to compost. These days we do a lot of educating through our monthly blog on the topics of composting, zero waste and other areas of sustainability.

After the George Floyd uprisings, many book groups popped up focused on reading and discussing books on racism/anti-racism and reading books by authors of color, but we were not aware of one that focused on environmental justice/racism.

So, we decided to start our own.

We’ve used both books and films as a springboard for discussion. Collective Resource Compost is the host and librarian Lesley Williams is our facilitator. We view the films and read or listen to the books on our own time. We meet on Zoom on the second Thursday evening of the month beginning in February and continuing through November from 7:00-8:30 pm central standard time.


In August, we’ll be discussing two of the episodes in a video series named The New Environmentalists: Season 1, Episode 2 – From Chicago to the Karoo and Season 1, Episode 3 – From Ithaca to the Amazon. Each episode highlights six individuals from around the globe who have fought for the rights of their communities making personal sacrifices and making change. They can be viewed at no cost on Tubi TV with commercials.


Maybe you saw it back in 2009 when it came out, but this time you’ll be viewing it through an environmental justice lens. In September, we’ll be discussing the feature film Avatar. Here’s the official trailer to refresh your memory. You can find it on Amazon Prime Video or rent a DVD from the library.


In October, we’ll be discussing the nonfiction book As Long as Grass Grows: The Indigenous Fight for Environmental Justice, from Colonization to Standing Rock, written by Dina Gilio-Whitaker. The book gives readers an accessible history of Indigenous resistance to government and corporate incursions on their lands and offers new approaches to environmental justice activism and policy.


In November, we’ll be concluding our environmental justice discussion group with a documentary on two of our favorite topics: waste and music. Landfillharmonic takes place primarily in Paraguay but ends up in some interesting places. It can be viewed at no cost on Tubi TV with commercials.

We hope you’ll join us for all or some of these discussions!

Registration is needed for each discussion. We use the same link every month but registration is open only after the current discussion concludes. Register for the August 11, September 8, October 13 and November 10 discussions here.

Author Details
Zero Waste Consultant | Collective Resource, Inc.

Mary Beth strongly believes that, “It’s always better to be doing something rather than nothing.” If you’re thinking of composting at home, she can help you work out what your particular “something” can be.

She’s confident a solution can be tailored to fit anyone’s needs and ambitions. “Anyone who eats can be a CRI customer, whether you are an individual or a large organization. I want you to understand the advantages of composting, and I can show you how CRI can make it easy.” Mary Beth has successfully designed waste diversion strategies for individuals, schools, houses of worship and other communities. She’s received the governor’s Environmental Hero award for her work at her daughter’s school. Whether you’re starting with a backyard bin, a kitchen bucket, a worm farm, or large-scale commercial collection, Mary Beth can be your good-natured guide.