Burn or not?
Am I wrong? Wasn't it Sen "Nelly" Rivera-O'Reilly who not so long ago declared "Burn it!" during the debate over trash-to-energy?
IMO, burn anything without roots or branches. Burn the construction debris. Save the mahogany, iron wood and any other exotic hardwoods. Chip the rest.
Compost would be a valuable soil additive. But it's a process that requires the addition of nitrogen, regular turning of the piles and maintaining moisture in the piles.
Maybe we could get back to being, the bread basket of the Caribbean?'
Like everything else, it comes down to $.
I haven't heard any Senators come up with a way to pay for their alternatives to burning.
With so many other more critically important post-hurricane things needing to be done, why are they wasting time debating this issue?
How about repairing the Hospitol, the roads, the port, communications/internet access, ect...
For once... I agree with the governor, if the Fed's are willing to pay for the burning of it, let them do it. Debris is still piled up in every neighborhood, let's get this cleaned up as fast and as inexpensively as possible. Once the Fed's pull out, nothing will get done because the local government is bankrupt.
My God, why isn't it being burned already? We are creating giant rat hotels. Compost takes years, especially with a heavy cellulose base. There is sadly no way to separate wood at this point either. Mulch is great for erosion control and weed suppression in need but with the resorts on STT down over a year who will use all the mulch?
The debate was for burning only a portion, about 35%, of the vegetative debris not all of it. So a lot of it is still going to be chipped and composted. Not sure why the chipping process is so much slower than burning. But so be it if it is. As long as there are temporary places to pile the chips I don't see the issue with how long it may take to compost. Eventually it will compost on it's own without addition of nitrogen or water or turning.
Burn Baby Burn!
The cost and energy it would require to chip this stuff will be enormous, and the out come will take years to degrade into useable compost!
And yes I made my living as a commercial farmer, using chemicals as pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizer. I did use a considerable amount of properly composted Dairy waste and probably some GMOs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Post hurricanes and storms here in Charleston; we process the debris using a tub-grinder. Quite efficient and eats whatever is put into it. Yes, we use more than one when needed.
USVI average temp will speed up the decomposition process.
Green, vegetative matter will release Nitrogen into the mass as it decomposes.
Chip piles would need to be turned as the internal temperature of the pile would cause spontaneous combustion.
What will be done with the Potash that will be a product of the curtain burn? Simply buried in the burn area?