Compost International
Saving the earth one compost heap at a time



Several years ago, my sister was rafting down the Zambezi (doesn't everyone?) when she came across a village where - as she put it - the people had forgotten how to grow food.  In spite of being located at the confluence of two sizeable rivers, the area was more or less barren - all the trees had been cut down for fuel with resulting erosion and degradation of the soil.  The people pulled ever smaller fish from the river, smoked them and exchanged this valuable protein source for canned foods which periodically were trucked in from the capital.

These people - and many like them - need help.

It occurred to me that teaching them to make compost would enrich the soil, make growing food possible, improve their lives and eventually help them to be self-sufficient.

So I trained as a Master Gardener with the Cornell Co-operative Extension and went to Compost School. I learnt that not only is compost the solution to a whole slew of environmental problems, but also that there are areas right here in the United States where learning to make compost could benefit whole communities.  Hence:

I am on a mission to improve the earth one compost heap at a time

If that sounds just a little evangelical, so be it.  I can't do it all myself, but I can "convert" everyone I meet to the philosophy that compost makes sense at all levels: backyard, community, municipality, state, national and international.  I am convinced that the simple act of returning organic matter to the soil can save the planet.

You can help by learning more (about compost and education) and by browsing the store.   ALL proceeds go towards supporting my one-woman, completely voluntary mission.

You can contact me, Elizabeth Whitehouse, at or 1-607-936-4732 

or you can find me on Facebook:




In November of 2011, I attended a daylong symposium entitled "Renewable Energy Now" put on by a small grass-roots organization, People for a Healthy Environment (PHE).   The first speaker was Bill McKibben who opened my eyes to the fact that the global warming we had been hearing about for so many years was so much more than higher temperatures here and there. 

Looking back, I cannot believe that I was so unaware of the existential danger posed by climate change, and so uninvolved in trying to find a solution. 

But I have done my best to make up for lost time.  I have gone from saving the earth one compost heap at at a time to trying to save the world by changing the systems that got us into this mess.  I am searching for a better way. (new book, new website and new location)